April 2015

  • Apr
    27

Ram Sponsors ‘Walk Like MADD 5K’

April 27, 2015

Ram Employees and their family participated in the Fort Lauderdale "Walk Like MADD 5K on Sunday."

Ram Employees and their family participated in the Fort Lauderdale “Walk Like MADD 5K” on Sunday.

FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. – April 27, 2015 – Ram Realty Services sponsored the “Walk Like MADD” 5K in Fort Lauderdale on Sunday, April 26. The walk took place along the Las Olas Riverwalk and is just one of hundreds of walks across the country put on by Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD) in an effort to end drunk driving crimes. Employees of Ram showed their support by walking in the 5K and donating to MADD, ultimately raising $1,388 for the organization. In total, the event raised over $175,000.

Money donated to MADD is used for victim services, as well as drunk driving awareness, education and prevention.

About Ram

Founded in 1978, Ram is an affiliated group of companies and partnerships that acquire, develop, manage and finance retail and residential properties in the Southeast. The group also selectively acquires debt secured by retail and residential properties.  Ram is currently investing Ram Realty Partners III LP, a value-added fund targeting retail and multifamily properties in select high growth markets in the Southeast.  Since 1996, the company has deployed $1.7 billion in real estate transactions.  Ram is headquartered in Palm Beach Gardens, Florida and has offices in Fort Lauderdale and Tampa, Florida and Charlotte, North Carolina. For more information, visit www.ramrealestate.com.

About Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD)

Founded by a mother whose daughter was killed by a drunk driver, Mothers Against Drunk Driving® (MADD) is the nation’s largest nonprofit working to protect families from drunk driving and underage drinking. MADD also supports drunk and drugged driving victims and survivors at no charge, serving one person every 8.6 minutes through local MADD victim advocates and at 1-877-MADD-HELP. For more information, visit www.madd.org.

 

  • Apr
    21

Apartment project proposed in Doral industrial park

April 21, 2015

By Brian Bandell, Senior Reporter via South Florida Business Journal

The trend of converting South Florida office park land to residential could continue as Doral considers an apartment proposal by Ram Realty.

Ram Dev, an affiliate of Peter D. Cummings’ Ram Realty in Palm Beach Gardens, wants to build Intercontinental Village, a 332-unit apartment complex in the Transal Business Park. The company has the 16.4-acre site under contract with current owner Avente Ltd.

Transal Business Park is zoned industrial, although it has a hotel and a restaurant that are considered compatible uses for the business park.

The property that could go residential is located on the south side of Northwest 27th Street at Northwest 84th Avenue. That’s next to the Intercontinental at Doral hotel.

A handful of other industrial and office properties in Doral have residential development plans pending.

  • Apr
    16

Ram Sells The Cypress Shopping Center

April 16, 2015

Ram Sells The Cypress Shopping Center

  • Ram sells The Cypress Shopping Center to DFG-Tampa Cypress, LLC
  • The Cypress Shopping Center is a 111,228 SF property located in Tampa, Fla.
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Tampa, Fla., April 14, 2015—Ram Realty Services, a leading developer and real estate investment manager throughout the Southeast, has announced the sale of The Cypress Shopping Center to DFG-Tampa Cypress, LLC. Dennis Carson of CBRE Inc., brokered the sale.

The Cypress Shopping Center is located at the heart of the rapidly growing, affluent Wesley Chapel area of Tampa, Fla., known as New Tampa, and includes 111,228 SF of retail space. It is currently 93% occupied and anchored by LA Fitness and Sweetbay. Ram will retain two pad sites and three outparcels as part of the deal.

The Cypress was originally constructed in 2009. In late 2011, Ram acquired interest in the asset for its third fund (RRPIII) through the purchase of two promissory notes secured by a first mortgage and directed by Regions Bank. Ram subsequently took title of the property in May 2013 and brought it to its current stabilization.

About Ram

Founded in 1978, Ram is an affiliated group of companies and partnerships that acquire, develop, manage and finance retail and residential properties in the Southeast. The group also selectively acquires debt secured by retail and residential properties.  Ram is currently investing Ram Realty Partners III LP, a value-added fund targeting retail and multifamily properties in select high growth markets in the Southeast.  Since 1996, the company has deployed $1.7 billion in real estate transactions.  Ram is headquartered in Palm Beach Gardens, Florida and has offices in Fort Lauderdale and Tampa, Florida and Charlotte, North Carolina. For more information, visit www.ramrealestate.com.

  • Apr
    14

That village vibe: South Floridians embracing developments with residential, retail units

April 14, 2015

By Johnny Diaz via the Sun Sentinel

South Florida is feeling the village vibe.

The Manor at Flagler Village in Fort Lauderdale, The Mark at CityScape in Boca Raton and other soon-to-come, residential-retail complexes are adding to a growing urban sprawl, as people look to move into the greater downtown areas and enjoy shops and restaurants just a short walk away from their doorsteps.

“We were seeing a suburban model for so many years. People are shifting back to the city center,” said Barbara Blake Boy, executive director of the Broward County Planning Council. “I think it’s an attraction to the amenities and what the downtowns have to offer.”

CityPlace in West Palm Beach, Royal Palm Place in Boca Raton, The Venture in Aventura and The Residences at the Village of Merrick Park in Coral Gables all have led the way toward more of these mixed-use developments. Developers and analysts agree there is demand for complexes with businesses on the ground floor and residential units above.

The 12-story Via Mizner, which will have luxury residential rental units and shops, is under construction at the corner of Federal Highway and Camino Real.

And later this year, The Related Group, which developed The Manor at Flagler Village, is expected to break ground on West Palm Beach Marina Village. The mixed-use development would feature six towers of 1,059 units, 15,000-square feet of restaurants and 10,000 square feet of retail stores, according to the developer.

Agave Ponce LLC has proposed building a Mediterranean Village on the former Old Spanish Village site on Ponce Circle in Coral Gables.

Some South Florida architecture experts say these urban complexes stand out in style and function, contrasting with what’s traditionally been built in the region.

“What’s really important about these new buildings is their relationship to the city,” said David Rifkind, an associate architecture professor at Florida International University, in an email. “They engage the city, rather than wall themselves off from it.

“Many of these complexes include ground-level retail [shops and restaurants] that foster a lively street life, and create public spaces open to both residents and non-residents. That creates the kind of rich, vibrant community that we see in the Art Walks in FAT Village, and which are typically missing in developments.”

Jeffrey Huber, an assistant architecture professor at Florida Atlantic University, thinks the region is seeing more of these mixed-use developments “because the market, like municipalities, are rediscovering ‘walkable urbanism’ … Homebuyers are willing to spend more to be within a certain distance of urban retail development, and the market is merely reacting to this demand.”

At The Manor at Flagler Village, flags hang off street poles touting “Beach, Urban, Chic.” The development has a beachside resort-type feel but is blocks away from downtown Fort Lauderdale skyscrapers. It has a clubhouse, fitness center, and daytime music playing on the speakers above the pool (as well as underwater).

New residents Dennis and Amanda Weiss say they moved to South Florida from just outside Houston, Texas, seeking a warmer climate and a close proximity to the beach and downtown. They found The Manor online and liked “the amenities, the pool, the fitness center, the restaurants going up,” said Dennis Weiss, 25. “It’s like a luxury community.”

Open since last summer, the complex off Federal Highway and Northeast Fifth Terrace offers luxury studios, one-bedroom and two-bedroom units, with monthly rent starting at $1,700.

There’s also a courtyard with towering bamboo trees and a fire pit, creating a Zen-like garden. Colada Cuban Coffee House and Eatery and the Mellow Mushroom pizza place are scheduled to open next month, developers say. A nail and hair salon and a craft beer bar also are in the plans.

“It creates a village for people, for pedestrians to walk around and shop and enjoy the nightlife as well,” said Arturo Peña, vice president and development manager at The Related Group.

“We definitely think it’s sprawl, it’s urbanism, people who want to be able to walk to the grocery store, walk to retail and not rely on their car,” added Peña, whose complex is 80 percent full. It sits next-door to another new complex, The Edge at Flagler Village, which has 331 units.

In Boca Raton, the 12-story Mark at CityScape is expected to officially open in May with 208 units and more than 18,000 square feet of restaurant/retail space on the ground level, according to the developer. Staying true to Boca Raton’s traditional Addison Mizner style of architecture, the white-hued complex features a Spanish red-tiled roof.

The development has allowed some residents to move into their studios, one-bedroom and two-bedroom units in March, with rents averaging $2,100 a month. Officials for the developer, Ram Realty Services, said they are negotiating leases with a yoga studio and restaurants for the ground floor.

Mixed-use developments are attracting a diverse mix of folks, said Hugo Pacanins, a managing director of residential development at Ram Realty Services.

“You have some younger professionals that work in Boca or close to Boca and they don’t want to live out west. And you have an older population, empty-nesters who don’t want to live in the big house in West Boca,” he said.

“A lot of people are downsizing from big homes and moving into downtown locations because they want to have the ability to walk to the restaurants or walk to Trader Joe’s … They are willing to sacrifice the space, the size of the unit, to live in a downtown location,” Pacanins added. “We are trying to create a destination.”

Johnny Diaz can be reached at johnnydiaz@sunsentinel.com or 954-356-4939.

  • Apr
    9

New Apartments offer lofty living in West Palm Beach

April 9, 2015

By Alexandra Clough – Palm Beach Post Staff Writer

Click here to read the article on PalmBeachPost.com 

What once was a historic telephone building now is home to an airy loft apartment building, the first of several new apartment projects set to
open in downtown West Palm Beach.

Final touches are being made to Alexander Lofts, an 85-unit converted loft building at 326 Fern Street set for occupancy in May. The historic property, previously known as The Meridian, was built in 1926 for Southern Bell Telephone and Telegraph as a regional office headquarters. Palm Beach Gardens-based Ram purchased the building and an adjacent property for $5.25 million in 2012.

Ram converted the Meridian building into apartments and renamed the six-story property Alexander Lofts, after telephone inventor Alexander Graham Bell. In tribute to the property’s origins, a mural on the east-facing exterior wall is a a colorful surrealist portrait of Bell. The mural was completed last year by Los Angeles artist Tristan Eaton, who used 600 cans of acrylic spray paint over 15 days to create the artwork.

When Ram bought the property three years ago, Ram chairman Peter Cummings said the goal was to create apartments “very different from new construction.”

It appears he succeeded.

The converted loft apartments feature adaptable open space. This means there no interior bedroom doors, just walls. (Bathrooms do have doors, however.)

Soaring ceilings, some as high as 15 feet, neutral color palates and industrial features, such as exposed ductwork, blend the historic elements of the building with modern finishes, such as glass-and-marble backsplash in the kitchen.

The property consists of studios, one and two-bedroom apartments. Rental rates still are being finalized.

But Hugo Pacanins, managing director of multifamily for Ram Realty Services, said monthly rents will start at $1,350. The building is pet friendly and has Wi- Fi throughout.

Reminders of the 1926 building’s historic roots are everywhere. Some units have original, 10-foot transom windows. Exposed brick decorates the lobby. Even the lobby’s modern ceiling light fixtures, large orbs lit in white and yellow, resemble the telephone assembly of rotary phones.

Pacanins said the goal was to create apartment space that was bright and neutral, to allow the apartments to be a “canvas” for tenants.

Back in 2012, Cummings said the cost of the Alexander Lofts redo could equal the purchase price.

In fact, Pacanins said, the conversion was about double the $5.5 million purchase price. Construction challenges, including piping, electrical and even exterior pavement issues were among the reasons for the added expenses, which sometimes take place with historic properties, Pacanins said.

In any event, Ram finally is at the finish line with the lofts. Plans are to start leasing in about two weeks, Pacanins said.

More WPB apartments
Farther north in downtown, the first apartment complex that is all brand-new construction is moving along well. The first residents are expected to be in Loftin Place by October, according to the developer. Loftin Place is between North Dixie Highway and North Olive Avenue, with Sixth Street on the south and Eucalyptus Street bordering the north side of the property. The first phase is in progress, with 259 planned studios, one- and twobedroom apartments, said Nader Salour, a principal with Cypress Realty in Jupiter. Leasing for the first completed units in this phase will start in May or June. When the property’s second phase is completed, Loftin Place will consist of 463 units.

Alexandra Clough writes about the economy, real estate and the law.

  • Apr
    3

TJ Maxx opens at University Center

April 3, 2015

Jacksonville, Fla. (April 3, 2015)— Nationwide retailer TJ Maxx hosted hundreds of customers in its grand opening at Ram’s University Center in Jacksonville, Fla., last weekend. TJ Maxx backfilled 24,067 square feet of the former Stein Mart space, bringing occupancy to 100%. Beall’s Outlet occupies the remaining 21,020 square feet of the former Stein Mart space.

Located at the SE corner of W. University and St. Augustine Road, University Center boasts 102,7898 square feet of retail space and serves a diverse customer base. Other notable tenants include LA Fitness, Dollar Tree, McDonald’s and CVS.

About Ram

Founded in 1978, Ram is an affiliated group of companies and partnerships that acquire, develop, manage and finance retail and residential properties in the Southeast. The group also selectively acquires debt secured by retail and residential properties.  Ram is currently investing Ram Realty Partners III LP, a value-added fund targeting retail and multifamily properties in select high growth markets in the Southeast.  Since 1996, the company has deployed $1.7 billion in real estate transactions.  Ram is headquartered in Palm Beach Gardens, Florida and has offices in Fort Lauderdale and Tampa, Florida and Charlotte, North Carolina.

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