Crystal House in Arlington

ARLINGTON, VA-Mack-Cali Realty Corp. has entered the metro DC market with a $262.5 million acquisition of a luxury apartment house in the Crystal City submarket. It is partnering with a fund advised by UBS Global Asset Management to acquire the 828-unit Crystal House from Avalon Bay.

The acquisition includes land to accommodate the development of approximately 295 additional units, 252 of which are currently approved. Walker & Dunlop secured a $165 million mortgage loan for the venture under the Delegated Underwriting and Servicing program of Fannie Mae. Mack-Cali’s Roseland subsidiary will manage the property and will oversee the renovation of the unrented units.

Mack-Cali is clearly aiming for the upper crust of Arlington’s rental market. Mitchell E. Hersh, president and chief executive officer of Mack-Cali, said that once the REIT has completed the renovation project, “we are confident that we’ll be able to command rents at the highest end of the market.”