A 312-unit garden-style apartment community has broken ground just north of the convergence of Interstate 4 and State Road 429.
Ezelle is being built on a 25-acre property at 6507 Sinclair Road in Osceola County, within a few miles of ChampionsGate, Celebration and the southwestern limits of Disney’s property.
The project has an estimated cost of $77 million and is a partnership between Palm Beach Gardens-based Ram Realty Advisors LLC and Miami-based Pinnacle, a full-service real estate development company.
The project team for Ezelle includes Clancy & Theys Construction Co.'s Winter Garden team as its general contractor, in addition to Altamonte Springs-based Forum Architecture & Interior Inc. and Orlando-based Harris Civil Engineers LLC.
It is another project in a steady stream of multifamily developments targeting the southern S.R. 429 corridor, near Disney and Interstate 4.
Travis Williams, vice president of development for Ram Realty Advisors, said both he and the firm are familiar with the area from past projects — including Citra at Windermere, which Ram Realty developed and sold in 2015 for $61.5 million — and they remain bullish on its upside.
“This area has been strong for multifamily for the last seven or eight years,” Williams said. “About two years ago, there was a little bit of an oversupply and that stalled out rents for a while, but there's been so much in-state migration that every market in the state is healthier in multifamily than it was two years ago.”
Williams added that the hope is to have units available to tenants by second-quarter 2023.
Ezelle will feature 10 three-story buildings with studio, one-, two- and three-bedroom floor plans that include stainless steel appliances, granite countertops and other amenities typically associated with Class A properties. The project is pursuing National Green Building Standard certification and, as the property includes protected wetlands, has plans for walking trails and built-in views of its natural assets.
"This beautiful new development provides a unique, high-quality and modern housing option for theme park team members,” said David Deutch, a cofounder and partner of Pinnacle.
Investors increasingly are interested in having Class A multifamily assets, such as Ezelle, as part of their portfolios, said Melissa Marcolini Quinn, senior managing director at JLL in Orlando who is not involved with the project — especially with rental rates spiking in the market. “It’s where developers are able to get their returns right now. People moving into the Orlando metro have to live somewhere. To buy a house right now is very difficult, so multifamily is still the hot commodity of the day.”
Once Ezelle does come online, it will join the I Drive Orlando multifamily submarket, which has 4,517 multifamily units currently under construction, according to CoStar Group. That makes it the busiest submarket for new units on the way, with the overall metro having 17,813 total multifamily units under construction. The 12-month absorption for the submarket has been positive at 3,625 units.
The average monthly apartment rent in the submarket is $1,899, outpacing metro Orlando's average of $1,717. However, the submarket's average apartment complex vacancy rate of 8.5% is worse than the region's 5.3%.
Ram Realty Advisors LLC acquires and develops retail, multifamily, and mixed-use properties in select high-growth markets throughout the Southeast. The investments are capitalized by Ram-sponsored discretionary private equity funds and institutional co-investment vehicles. Since 1996, Ram has deployed in excess of $3.5 billion of capital. Ram and its predecessor entities were founded in 1978. The company is headquartered in Palm Beach Gardens, Florida, and has offices in Tampa, Florida; Charlotte and Chapel Hill, North Carolina; and Nashville, Tennessee. www.ramrealestate.com
On behalf of Ram Realty Advisors:
Alchemy Communications Group
office: 561.935.9953 ext. 101
Vice President of Development - Central Florida
Ram Realty Advisors