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READING, PA-Edison, NJ-based American Heritage Communities has obtained nearly $16.6 million in mezzanine financing for development of the Heritage of Green Hills, a 619-unit continuing care retirement community it plans for 78 acres at 10 Tranquility Lane. Philadelphia-based Grosvenor Investment Management US Inc., formerly Legg Mason Real Estate Services, provided the funding.

The loan capitalizes acquisition of the project’s 78 acres, site development and other up front costs. The full development cost is estimated at $145 million and will progress in three phases, Kristin Kutac, EVP of marketing and sales for American Heritage, tells GlobeSt.com.

“All zoning and approvals are in place,” she says, “and we will open a sales center at the site in September. We are required to sell 70% of the first phase before breaking ground,” she adds the projects groundbreaking are in winter 2008. Phase I will consist of 242 apartment units and 16 villas. “We have contracts for 35 units,” she says. Phase II will add another 242 apartment units, and Phase III will include a healthcare center and 24 villas.

Entrance fees for units begin at $145,000 and reach to $299,000 a unit. “There are 11 different floor plans ranging from 650 sf to 1,600 sf,” Kutac says. Monthly service fees range from $1,150 a month to $2,050 a month and include a range of services such housekeeping and a monthly food allowance of $200 in any of the community’s five planned restaurants. Three will open in Phase I, and another two will be added in the second phase.

This is American Heritage’s first, but not its last, planned retirement community. Bruce E. Boyer, its chairman and president, is also president of Sloan Management Inc., which operates senior communities in four states, and Lawrence Murphy, COO and EVP of operations, is the former COO of Marriott Senior Living. Kutac is the former VP of marketing and sales for Horizon Bay Senior Communities. American Heritage “is looking at other sites in the mid-Atlantic and Northeast,” Kutac says.

London-based Grosvenor acquired Legg Mason Real Estate Services from Baltimore-based Legg Mason Inc. this March, and changed its name, but not its management. At the time, Doug Callantine, president, told GlobeSt.com the Grosvenor affiliation put the company “on a platform to grow our business among existing and new clients.” American Heritage is a new client also on a planned growth path.

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