Industries Commercial Real Estate

Norfolk native’s company announces $20 million investment for workforce housing

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Community Preservation and Development Corp. (CPDC), a nonprofit real estate developer in the mid-Atlantic region, announced a $20.7 million investment Tuesday in the acquisition and renovation of Woodmere Trace, a 300-unit workforce housing community in Norfolk.

This acquisition aligns with CPDC’s strategic plan to expand into Hampton Roads, Richmond, and Baltimore.The company is based out of Washington, D.C.
Woodmere Trace represents the first acquisition into the Hampton Roads market, and the company said it’s committed to additional affordable housing opportunities in the area. 

CPDC President and CEO J. Michael Pitchford, a long-time resident of Norfolk, has several ties to the Norfolk community.
“I attended Norfolk Catholic High School, Old Dominion University, and was the past chairman of Norfolk’s Harborfest.  I am extremely excited about the opportunity to return to Norfolk to contribute to its development,” Pitchford said in a statement. 

Local officials are also optimistic. To date, there are few nonprofit real estate developers of scale in Norfolk.
“Providing quality, well-managed workforce housing opportunities is a critical component of the effort to strengthen Norfolk’s neighborhoods,” said John Kownack, chief of community development at the Norfolk Redevelopment Housing Authority. 

Woodmere Trace is located in the central part of Norfolk, in an area ripe for growth and investment. It’s close to the Norfolk International Airport, downtown, large employment hubs and two major thoroughfares.
The deal will be financed through a unique investment tool called a Real Estate Investment Trust (REIT). The Housing Partnership Equity Trust, or Equity Trust, is a social-purpose REIT created to increase the stock and improve the quality of affordable and workforce housing across the country.

“This investment tool is a game changer for nonprofit developers because it provides our 12 partner organizations, including CPDC, with a ready source of capital to quickly and efficiently acquire and operate properties like Woodmere Trace for the long-haul,” said Drew Ades, President and CEO, Housing Partnership Equity Trust.

Planned restorations at Woodmere include kitchen and bathroom renovations, roof and HVAC replacement where needed, improvements to exterior stairwells, and landscaping.  Renovations should be complete by the end of 2014.

CPDC has partnered with S.L. Nusbaum Realty Co.  in Norfolk to manage the property.

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