Keith Melton

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HUNTSVILLE, AL—Walker & Dunlop has structured $51.9 millionin financing for ECLIPSE at CityCentre, a five-story, 278-unit,multifamily project here. Located in Huntsville's Downtown area,the property is within the bounds of a designated opportunity zonecensus tract.

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Walker & Dunlop Senior Managing Director Keith Melton tellsGlobeSt.com that his firm currently has more than 25 multifamilyprojects totaling over $400 million in the Huntsville MSA. Walker& Dunlop has also financed or facilitated investment sales formultifamily assets in Birmingham, Montgomery and Mobile.

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"Walker & Dunlop has witnessed consistent rent in theHuntsville MSA resulting in additional inquiries for newconstruction, refinances or acquisitions of multifamily assets inthe area," Melton says. "The Huntsville MSA has strong job growthfrom market drivers like the new Toyota plant, private companiesutilizing the intellectual capital formerly with NASA in Huntsvilleand Redstone Arsenal." He adds that most market analysts anticipatethe city populations of Huntsville exceeding the city populationsof Birmingham by 2025 as the largest city in Alabama.

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Walker & Dunlop arranged the loan through the US Dept. ofHousing & Urban Development's (HUD) 221(d)(4) new constructionprogram, which includes both construction and permanent financingin a single loan. The team worked to ensure the financing termswere consistent with opportunity zone guidance, securing a two-yearconstruction term followed by a 40-year, fully amortizing,fixed-rate loan.

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The financing also features a declining prepayment schedule forthe initial ten years post-construction and is open to prepaymentat par for the remaining 30 years.

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To fully capitalize on opportunity zone benefits, the developeris required to hold the asset for a minimum of 10 years, makingHUD's long-term financing program an ideal fit, Melton said.

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"ECLIPSE at CityCentre will serve the robust STEAM (science,technology, engineering, arts, and mathematics) workforce and thenext generation that is entering the market, said Max Grelier,co-founder of RCP Companies. "The project will provide built-indemand for the authentic blend of live, work, play, shop amenitieswe have planned for CityCentre, which is a critical piece inHuntsville's revitalization of downtown."

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Co-developed by Spring Bay Property Company, the property willsit atop 18,000 square feet of upscale restaurants and retail andis part of the CityCentre at Big Spring master-planned projectbeing developed by RCP Companies.

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Once complete, ECLIPSE at CityCentre will include a mix ofstudios, one-, and two-bedroom units with open concept floor plansand nine-foot ceilings.

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