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ORLANDO-Five years after it surfaced as Downtown’s first major apartment communities in the last 10 years, the 303-unit, 95%-leased Echelon at Cheney Place has been sold and will be converted to condo units priced from $100,000 to $300,000.

Chicago-based Cheney Place II LLC, headed by Illinois developer Robert W. Forloine, paid St. Petersburg, FL-based Echelon Properties Inc. $36.5 million or $120,462 per unit for the North Orange Avenue asset.

Locally based Olde Town Brokers Inc., headed by developer Phil Rampy, is offering tenants a chance to buy the condos before they are formally marketed in August. The conversions are expected to be completed by year end.

The Echelon conversion follows a score of similar redevelopments Downtown in the past 18 months. Downtown’s working population of about 30,000 have been the main buyers. One of the quickest sellouts in years occurred last month when the Metropolitan at Lake Eola, formerly the Harley Hotel and Sheraton Four Points Hotel, sold its 128 units in 72 hours. The units were priced from $100,000 to $200,000.

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