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(Read more on the multifamily market.)

HOUSTON-A local developer’s land play will ultimately lead to a 252-unit multifamily complex. Michael Stevens Interest Inc., which acquired 10.4 acres in the Texas Medical Center, will break ground immediately on an apartment complex carrying an estimated all-in tab of $25 million.

The purchase of 9000 Almeda Rd. is the company’s first development site in the submarket. John C. McEwan, Michael Stevens’ development and acquisitions director, says the growing area helped to spur the decision to buy the site from Carolyn Rosenstock Ellis of Houston. And the growth, he says, is the reason that it will build a multifamily complex on the land rather than another product type.

“The employment base the medical center continues to produce here every year is growing,” McEwan says. “The location also has easy proximity to Downtown, and we’re right on 610 [Loop]. It’s a good access point for an apartment complex.”

The land is less than a mile northeast of AstroWorld, a 109-acre closed theme park along Interchange Drive. Marshal V. Davidson Jr., associate director for Cushman & Wakefield of Texas Inc., tells GlobeSt.com that since the AstroWorld land sale, interest has perked up in the area. “That area south of the loop has traditionally been industrial warehousing.

But because of various factors, the psychological barrier of the 610 Loop has been breached,” says Davidson, who teamed with C&W executive vice president David L. Cook, senior director Jeffrey G. Peden and associate Graham Horton to represent the seller.

Davidson points out that the seller received multiple offers for her land. In addition, C&W is representing another seller for an adjacent four-acre tract, a deal expected to close by the end of August. “We’re seeing a lot of development going on in and around the area of AstroWorld for residential use,” he adds.

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