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HOUSTON-Opus West, a relative newcomer to the multifamily sector, is undertaking its first Texas apartment project, starting with 223 luxury lofts in Houston.

Opus West entered the multifamily market last year with two projects in Santa Rosa, CA. Now, it is teaming with Phoenix-based Alliance Communities to roll out more than $200 million in multifamily developments, mostly in Phoenix and California, Thomas W. Roberts, Opus West president, said in a press release.

The joint venture’s first project will be the Broadstone Lofts at Uptown, ticketed for 3363 McCue Rd. in Houston’s Galleria submarket. Alliance is the design/build contractor and will manage the property when it comes to market. Opus West’s role is that of an equity partner and construction consultant, Paul Lembke, Opus West’s construction manager, tells GlobeSt.com. Steinberg Collaborative of Houston is the architect.

Lembke said all of the companies in the Minnetonka, MN-based Opus Group are branching out from their traditional office, industrial and retail products into multifamily development. He says Opus West decided to follow suit after seeing other Opus groups’ success in the arena.

Construction will begin in the fourth quarter on the Broadstone Lofts at Uptown. It is set to deliver in second quarter 2004. The four-story buildings will feature one-, two- and three-bedroom apartments, with rent rates ranging from $900 to $2,500 per month. Units will feature 10-foot ceilings, brick accent walls, hardwood flooring and granite countertops.

The Opus West teammate is a subsidiary of Phoenix-based Alliance Residential. Since 1985, the Alliance team has developed more than 30,000 units. The developer added Texas to its lineup just last year, acquiring the first phase of the Broadstone at New Territory in Sugar Land, south of Houston. It is now building out the project’s second phase.

In Houston, Opus West’s current project roster includes the DeVry Institute branch going up in the northwest submarket. In July, Opus West took over Texas from Opus South. The portfolio contains about 270,000 sf of office product, 270,000 sf of industrial product and a land bank, with significant holdings in Houston.

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