Case Studies: Development

Promenade Pointe, Norfolk, VA

Promenade Pointe is planned to be a resort style community on the banks of the lafayette River system. The 183 luxury apartments will showcase upgraded finishes and features such as granite countertops, gourmet kitchens, lofted units, vaulted ceilings, and expansive water views. In addition, we have partnered with the City of Norfolk to give students the chance to learn about the local ecosystem and wildlife, at our on-site wetlands. Canoes and a canoe launch pier are available for use by residents and local schools. The deal structure used for this transaction was a fee simple purchase. We assembled this infill site and led the rezoning effort.

Challenges

  • The project required an assemblage of 4 parcels with different owners.
  • located along the banks of a river, the property contained a tremendous amount of fill and debris, which also caused environmental issues.
  • The property‚Äôs soil makeup was predominantly clay, for depths of 80 feet. This could have caused settlement of the buildings of several feet after construction completion, unless the property was set on deep concrete piles.
  • As a result of wetlands and unusable portions, only about 4.24 acres were available for development. however, land is very scarce in the submarket, and finding another parcel as large as this property is unlikely.
  • To achieve the density target of 183 units, an all-surface parked design was not an option. But the rents in the area did not warrant the construction of a parking deck.
  • How to plan the buildings so as to maximize the scenic views of water and wetlands throughout the property.
  • The adjacent neighborhood vehemently opposed the project.

Solutions

  • We negotiated a take down schedule for the land that did not require closing until after rezoning was achieved and allowed for one closing.
  • We designed the property as a mix of surface parking and some tuck under parking, eliminating the need for a parking deck, and achieving a density of 43 units per usable acre. This design was achieved without a full concrete podium for the tuck under parking.
  • With our design consultants, we planned an earth-work and soil compaction plan that eliminated the need for concrete piles, still allowed for slab on grade buildings, and reduced the overall soil related cost.
  • We enrolled in the virginia voluntary Remediation Program to ensure that all contaminated soils were appropriately treated, and that construction methods were approved by the Department of Environmental Quality.
  • We undertook an intense grassroots education strategy to engage the stake holders and the community about the benefits of the project.
  • We forged alliances with local schools to use the property as an outdoor classroom and recreation destination.