chi-albert4 (2)

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DETROIT-Developers havetransformed the office market of Detroit's CBD by renovating dozensof underutilized buildings and attracting hundreds of firms. Butthe now-vibrant office market has also sent ripple effects throughthe residential and retail sectors. The downtown has thousands ofnew apartments, and much like the CBD's new office spaces, most arehistoric renovations rather than new construction.

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One of the earliest of theseefforts was at 1214 Griswold, a former senior living facility.Detroit-based firms Broder & Sachse Real EstateServices,Inc. and Kraemer Design Group, PLCcollaborated to transform it into a 127-unit luxury complex.Now known as the Albert of Capitol Park, it opened inthe summer of 2014 and illustrates the impact of housingrenovations.

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“It's proven the theory that ifyou bring residents into the community the services willfollow,” RobertKraemer ofKraemer Design tellsGlobeSt.com. The ground floorof 1214 Griswold had been “sleepy,” but today that retail space isnearly 100% filled, and includes unique storefronts likeCity Bark, a pet supply store, and La Lanterna, an Italian restaurant with historic roots inthe city, to name a few.

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Originally designed byAlbert Kahnin 1929, the building was added tothe National Registerof Historic Places in1980. But the renovation presented a few challenges, Kraemer adds.Most residents in luxury apartment complexes expect laundryfacilities in their homes, but the Albert could not provide thatamenity. The developers handled that by creating a large laundryfacility and making it into more of a clubhouse than a laundry. “Wedeliberately went a bit over the top and made it a fun place. Themillennial generation actually enjoys that kind ofexperience.”

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The downtown market as a whole nowhas more than 6,000 apartments spread across the CBD and adjacentneighborhoods like Corktown, Midtown, Grand Circus Park andLafayette Park, according to a new market report byBroder &Sachse. The CBD nowhas more than 2,100 apartments and an occupancy rate of more than98%, Broder & Sachse found. “We see that across the downtown,”says Kraemer.

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But the Albert was one of thefirst luxury apartment buildings in the downtown area to provide afull suite of amenities, he adds. The package includes a conciergeservices, a fitness center, and a pet grooming room, among otherfeatures.

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It has been 100% occupied forseveral years, and keeps prospective renters on a waiting list. “Itshowed another aspect of the market,” says Kraemer.

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chi-albert4 (2)

|

DETROIT-Developers havetransformed the office market of Detroit's CBD by renovating dozensof underutilized buildings and attracting hundreds of firms. Butthe now-vibrant office market has also sent ripple effects throughthe residential and retail sectors. The downtown has thousands ofnew apartments, and much like the CBD's new office spaces, most arehistoric renovations rather than new construction.

|

One of the earliest of theseefforts was at 1214 Griswold, a former senior living facility.Detroit-based firms Broder & Sachse Real EstateServices,Inc. and Kraemer Design Group, PLCcollaborated to transform it into a 127-unit luxury complex.Now known as the Albert of Capitol Park, it opened inthe summer of 2014 and illustrates the impact of housingrenovations.

|

“It's proven the theory that ifyou bring residents into the community the services willfollow,” RobertKraemer ofKraemer Design tellsGlobeSt.com. The ground floorof 1214 Griswold had been “sleepy,” but today that retail space isnearly 100% filled, and includes unique storefronts likeCity Bark, a pet supply store, and La Lanterna, an Italian restaurant with historic roots inthe city, to name a few.

|

Originally designed byAlbert Kahnin 1929, the building was added tothe National Registerof Historic Places in1980. But the renovation presented a few challenges, Kraemer adds.Most residents in luxury apartment complexes expect laundryfacilities in their homes, but the Albert could not provide thatamenity. The developers handled that by creating a large laundryfacility and making it into more of a clubhouse than a laundry. “Wedeliberately went a bit over the top and made it a fun place. Themillennial generation actually enjoys that kind ofexperience.”

|

The downtown market as a whole nowhas more than 6,000 apartments spread across the CBD and adjacentneighborhoods like Corktown, Midtown, Grand Circus Park andLafayette Park, according to a new market report byBroder &Sachse. The CBD nowhas more than 2,100 apartments and an occupancy rate of more than98%, Broder & Sachse found. “We see that across the downtown,”says Kraemer.

|

But the Albert was one of thefirst luxury apartment buildings in the downtown area to provide afull suite of amenities, he adds. The package includes a conciergeservices, a fitness center, and a pet grooming room, among otherfeatures.

|

It has been 100% occupied forseveral years, and keeps prospective renters on a waiting list. “Itshowed another aspect of the market,” says Kraemer.

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Brian J. Rogal

Brian J. Rogal is a Chicago-based freelance writer with years of experience as an investigative reporter and editor, most notably at The Chicago Reporter, where he concentrated on housing issues. He also has written extensively on alternative energy and the payments card industry for national trade publications.

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