"We are completely winding down operations," Winston Hewett,director of corporate communications with Minneapolis-based OpusCorp., tells GlobeSt.com. She says none of Opus' other fourregional divisions are affected by Opus South's decision.

The bankruptcy filing is necessitated by continued deteriorationof economic conditions in the Southeast real estate markets,according to Anne Marie Solberg, Opus South's chief restructuringofficer. "While we began slowing the pace of new development nearlytwo years ago in anticipation of difficult market conditions, wemust now take additional measures to enable an orderly wind down ofour portfolio, protect asset values and maximize returns onlenders' investments," Solberg stated in a release.

According to Hewett, Opus South has 12 bank loans totaling $324million that are either maturing or callable this year, of whichfour involve Florida condominium projects totaling $103 millionwith 228 of 330 units unsold. The rest of the loans involve variouscommercial real estate projects throughout the Southeast, she says,adding: "All of these projects were unable to securerefinancing."

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