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Houston Micro-Condo Development Now to Include Hotel

A New York City micro-unit developer had hoped to sell 550 micro-condos to millennials and empty nesters. The project is being redesigned to reduce the number of micro-condos and add a hotel.
July 29, 2016, 10am PDT | Irvin Dawid
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Inspired by the 2013 winner of a New York City micro-apartment competition spearheaded by former Mayor Michael Bloomberg, New York City-based Novel Creative Development LLC announced plans to build "Ivy Lofts, the first 'micro-unit' condominium project in Houston," reported Paul Takahashi, real estate reporter for the Houston Business Journal, in November 2015.

Unlike micro-apartments that are typically rented, purchasing the micro-condos proved to be a challenge, particularly for millennials.

"[T]he new developer expected to sell all 550 units before breaking ground in June 2016," reported Takahashi on July 25. "However, four months after opening an on-site sales center, Ivy Lofts had secured contracts from only 68 prospective buyers, said Wen Pin Tsai, Novel Creative Development’s vice president of business development." That's just over 12 percent of the units.

Just to clarify, the proposed 24-story building [see slideshow] proposed on 1.4 acres in EaDo, Houston's up-and-coming East Downtown neighborhood, has yet to break ground.

According to a July 28 phone call with Jared Anthony, a public relations representative for Ivy Lofts, a major challenge for millennials was financing, which has since been simplified. 

He added that the number of micro-condos, which range in size from 330 sq.ft. to 1,000 sq. ft., will be reduced to 300 to 350 units, and will occupy one of the two towers. The second tower will be designed as a conventional hotel.

The developer hopes to break ground in January or February, 2017.

Hat tip to Kim Slowey. See her summary, composed of a brief and insight, in Construction Dive.

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Published on Monday, July 25, 2016 in Houston Business Journal
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