Two luxury apartment complexes are replacing a shuttered furniture store in the Kierland area of northeast Phoenix with monthly rents expected to top out at $4,000 in one and $8,000 in the other.
The project, called Modera Kierland, is the first under construction in Phoenix for developer Mill Creek Residential. It's going in at 7171 E. Paradise Lane, the site of the former Ladlow’s Fine Furniture, which was demolished.
Mill Creek bought the 5.7-acre site from Ladlow’s for $43.75 million, according to real estate database Vizzda. Tyler Wilson, managing director of development in Arizona for Mill Creek, said the site had interest from many developers because of its location.
“Developers saw the same potential we saw,” he said. “We all had the desire to plant our flag on a really desirable location.”
The area already has several luxury apartments and condos to the south. Wilson said this project will be unique with green space, retail shops and dining options. He said they aim to bring neighborhood services like a gym, a coffee shop and possibly a restaurant.
A 1-acre green space will run along Paradise Lane in the center of the property for use by patrons of the businesses, residents and the public, Wilson said. The area will have shade and seating and a small pedestal that a performer could use.
The apartments themselves will be two different complexes, one on the east side of the site and one on the west, each marketed to a different demographic with vastly different amenities and price points, Wilson said.
On the western side of the site, the units in the complex will be more like condominium units with larger floor plans, but they will be for rent. The complex is expected to have a high-end chef’s kitchen to organize culinary experiences for residents and luxury health and wellness services.
“It will feel kind of boutique,” he said. The east complex will have about 181 units and rents at the complex will range from about $2,500 to $8,000 per month.
The eastern complex will have 257 units above the retail space. The complex will feature more “market rate” amenities, including a pool courtyard, gaming areas and a rooftop deck. Rents at the complex will range from $2,000 to $4,000 per month, Wilson said.
Mill Creek is under contract to purchase another site in the Kierland area, and three others around the Valley, Wilson said. The company also is planning an apartment project in central Phoenix that will be built adjacent to the "Punchcard building."
In the Kierland area, there has been a trend of redeveloping former retail or office spaces into high-end residential, Nick Wood, zoning attorney for the project, said.
The former La Maison Interiors store on Scottsdale Road north of Kierland Boulevard is being developed into an apartment tower as part of Optima Kierland, which has several other buildings already open in the area.
“There has been an evolution of these old, underutilized retail and office sites being converted into residential,” Wood said.
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“Demand for multifamily is off the charts,” Wood said. “This trend will continue, not just in Kierland but everywhere. Demand for retail is shifting so much, it’s not unusual to see retail buildings converted to multifamily.”