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(Read more on the multifamily market.)

HOUSTON-The foundation is being laid for the 423-unit Le Maison on Revere, a $90-million project for the River Oaks submarket. It is ZOM Inc.’s second in Greater Houston–and a third one with another 250 units on the drawing boards for the Galleria area.

Situated on 5.8 acres at 2727 Revere St., Le Maison on Revere is scheduled for delivery in summer 2009. The complex will be 40% one-bedroom units and the balance as two-bedroom apartments, with the average unit at 978 sf. Cadence McShane Corp. in Houston is the general contractor. Baltimore, MD-headquartered RTKL Associates Inc. designed it.

Trip Stephens, chief investment officer for the Orlando-based development company, says the River Oaks submarket offers excellent demographics and high barriers to entry with it difficult to buy land and develop. “We ended up purchasing an existing complex and demolishing it,” he explains. “It’s the only way to go in that submarket.”

Stephens says ZOM will do the same thing to get its third Houston project into the Galleria submarket. He says the closing for the existing apartment complex should occur late in the first quarter. The plan is to start scraping the three-acre site around midyear.

ZOM’s first project in the region was the 430-unit Bel Air Apartments at 2121 Allen Pkwy., which was completed in late 2006. It is about 10 miles northeast of Le Maison on Revere.

“We’re bullish on Texas,” Stephens tells GlobeSt.com. “Employment growth is the key to apartment demand and Texas markets are strong and have a positive outlook over the next decade.” ZOM also is planning a fourth project in Dallas, and has another one under way in Austin. The company is not known for its long-term hold strategy so Stephens says the goal is to get them finished, stabilized and then sell them when “there’s an opportune sales window.”

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