Author Topic: Micro-lofts Fill Demand for Downtown Living  (Read 10138 times)

Metro Jacksonville

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Micro-lofts Fill Demand for Downtown Living
« on: March 28, 2013, 08:02:39 AM »
Micro-lofts Fill Demand for Downtown Living



Micro-lofts are a part of a very interesting urban housing trend trend catching on in other major cities. Downtown Vision's Katherine Hardwick wonders if Is Downtown Jacksonville ripe for micro-lofts?

Full Article
http://www.metrojacksonville.com/article/2013-mar-micro-lofts-fill-demand-for-downtown-living

Dapperdan

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Re: Micro-lofts Fill Demand for Downtown Living
« Reply #1 on: March 28, 2013, 09:56:03 AM »
I think it would be succesful here. It would take a developer willing to take a leap of faith, but I really think they could do well.

urbanlibertarian

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Re: Micro-lofts Fill Demand for Downtown Living
« Reply #2 on: March 28, 2013, 10:33:34 AM »
Isn't City Place on Ashley St a similar set up?
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tufsu1

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Re: Micro-lofts Fill Demand for Downtown Living
« Reply #3 on: March 28, 2013, 10:36:48 AM »
I think it would be succesful here. It would take a developer willing to take a leap of faith, but I really think they could do well.

I disagree...they do best in markets where an average size 1bdr apartment is over $1000 a month (and that's the bottom end).

simms3

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Re: Micro-lofts Fill Demand for Downtown Living
« Reply #4 on: March 28, 2013, 10:44:33 AM »
^^^^You're on the right track, but try markets where an avg size 1BR starts at over $3500/mo.  The general consensus is that New York and Boston are really the only two markets that can provide demand for micro lofts in a material way. And in Boston we're talking a very small area.  Even in SF, which is more expensive than Boston for renting, people are still used to at least getting around 600-800 SF for a 1BR in most cases.  I currently live in 450 SF and I'm happy, wouldn't consider less (no need to).

Micro will not take off in Jax, ever.  There is no reason.  Micro is essentially 200-350 SF or less, technically speaking.  Who the hell in Jax would consider that when they can get a luxurious 1,200 SF 2BR at many places for around a thousand bucks.
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thelakelander

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Re: Micro-lofts Fill Demand for Downtown Living
« Reply #5 on: March 28, 2013, 10:52:36 AM »
Isn't City Place on Ashley St a similar set up?

No. City Place's units are much larger than the average micro-loft.
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thelakelander

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Re: Micro-lofts Fill Demand for Downtown Living
« Reply #6 on: March 28, 2013, 10:57:17 AM »
Simms, what kind of market exists in downtown Providence?  Apparently, there's a micro-loft project underway there. Rental prices start at $550/month for spaces ranging between 225-450 square feet:

http://www.arcadeprovidence.com/micro-lofts/

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gedo3

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Re: Micro-lofts Fill Demand for Downtown Living
« Reply #7 on: March 28, 2013, 11:03:41 AM »
These would definitely cause some interesting discussions when you consider they would be in competition with all the new regular apartments we saw in yesterday's blog!

Tacachale

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Re: Micro-lofts Fill Demand for Downtown Living
« Reply #8 on: March 28, 2013, 11:11:42 AM »
Simms, what kind of market exists in downtown Providence?  Apparently, there's a micro-loft project underway there. Rental prices start at $550/month for spaces ranging between 225-450 square feet:

http://www.arcadeprovidence.com/micro-lofts/

I could definitely see a market for a place of that size for that price in Jax. It would definitely appeal to all the people who get a larger place with a roommate they don't necessarily want, or else sacrifice amenities they do want for a cheaper pad. I know quite a few people like that.
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thelakelander

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Re: Micro-lofts Fill Demand for Downtown Living
« Reply #9 on: March 28, 2013, 11:20:57 AM »
^Which starts to get back to the question posed by DVI's Katherine Hardwick.  Could something like this be a suitable use for a building with small footprints like the Florida Life or Bisbee?

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jaxlore

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Re: Micro-lofts Fill Demand for Downtown Living
« Reply #10 on: March 28, 2013, 11:33:17 AM »
I still feel there might be a market but it would have to be really cheap to attract folks and I am not sure you can work those numbers. Just look at all the artists filling up Cork. If they had a cheap place stay close by it might work. That being said we need more affordable downtown apartments and less "Luxury".

simms3

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Re: Micro-lofts Fill Demand for Downtown Living
« Reply #11 on: March 28, 2013, 11:45:54 AM »
Simms, what kind of market exists in downtown Providence?  Apparently, there's a micro-loft project underway there. Rental prices start at $550/month for spaces ranging between 225-450 square feet:

http://www.arcadeprovidence.com/micro-lofts/



Seriously, I was going to type a lengthy response.  I've worked on a class A garden style deal in suburban Raleigh, I've worked on mixed-use portfolio in Back Bay that had micro units, I've worked on 2 condo projects in NYC, and now I work on stuff out here in CA.  I've seen a good bit and pay a good bit of attention to trends (most of my firm's multifamily including the garden apartments I worked on were ground up).

Nice to read these fluffy articles written by people who aren't seeing the proformas or leaving out details such as complete subsidization (as occurs in bankrupt cities such as Providence).  It's not reality.  Micro is not new for NYC, it's a collusion of the industry to try to push a trend so that developers, architects, etc make money on new developments.  To put it bluntly.  It's basically just relegated to NYC and maybe very central Boston (like Back Bay).  It won't be going anywhere else anytime soon.  Even in Chicago renters expect space, LoL.  Even here in SF where there is some limited micro, anything under 400 SF is atypical and unacceptable and unnecessary.

Next.

PS: These people need to get into the private development business occasionally...gotta love architects and their weird thinking.  If Jax had BUSINESS and stuff going on DT, I bet you the highest and best use of the Trio is as a boutique hotel under a flag such as Kimpton (which undoubtedly will never come to Jax).  You could also do office there really well.  Apts?  I'm just not seeing it so much.  The one narrow building is really going to be a challenge without a ground up adjoining tower next door.
« Last Edit: March 28, 2013, 05:10:59 PM by simms3 »
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simms3

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Re: Micro-lofts Fill Demand for Downtown Living
« Reply #12 on: March 28, 2013, 11:48:40 AM »
To answer your question, Providence is one of the most irrelevant cities in the country at this point.  Nobody cares what happens there...it's not a "market".  The bloated government drives everything, tries everything, etc, but the city is not in good shape.  Jax is more of a relevant market and probably presents more development or acquisition opportunity than Providence.  The renter pool there is different, everything is different.  Not a comp for Jax in ANY way whatsoever.  I don't think there is any translation between what goes on there and what goes on in Jax.
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fieldafm

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Re: Micro-lofts Fill Demand for Downtown Living
« Reply #13 on: March 28, 2013, 12:52:22 PM »
Quote
Why the hell is this woman posing this question because she read about micro units in NYC???  Is she smoking crack?

First off, don't be d!ck towards someone that is simply trying to start a conversation about a long abandoned buidling downtown.  It's nice to see DVI being more proactive recently. 

Second, I have to agree with simms on principal as it relates to the hyper local example of the Florida Life Building.   I don't think there is a market for the kind of rents required to break even on that building.  Your rehab costs are going to be pretty high (probably around $18 sq ft).  You'd have to subsidize the development pretty heavily (the $9mm just allocated to DIA won't cut it). 

Overstreet

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Re: Micro-lofts Fill Demand for Downtown Living
« Reply #14 on: March 28, 2013, 12:55:24 PM »
The thing I disliked about Providence is that it is in Rhode Island.

If I am going to be limited to 300sf it will have wheels on it and electric slide outs.