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A residential loft project is planned for North Park, just east of Albertsons on University Avenue at Louisiana Street. The long-empty lot was originally listed last August at $895,000. Purchaser of the property was Morley, LLC. The seller was Sunland Real Estate, LLC.

According to Vicki Granowitz, chair of the North Park Planning Committee, “it has not been presented to the NPPC or our Urban Design-Project Review subcommittee, and none of us have seen it yet. So we haven't even begun the public process.”

Architect for the project is Jeff Svitak Inc., whose projects include the 14-unit Columbia Apartments in Little Italy, and Pio Pio restaurant in New York City. Morley, LLC is located at Svitak's office in Little Italy. Svitak did not yet have more details or preliminary architectural renderings.

Some North Park residents have described this rundown section of University Avenue — from Florida Street, eastward to around Hamilton Street — as ripe for redevelopment. There are a few old single-family homes left, some of them turned into business locations.

Danny Fitzgerald, vice president at Cassidy/Turley's Urban Strategies Group, sold the property effective June 4, 2014. Fitzgerald described the lofts development as “a work in progress” and emphasized that Svitak “is the lead on the development.”

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dwbat July 8, 2014 @ 10:46 p.m.

In response to Steve Brown's Facebook comment: I guess it's the result of the trend in many big cities now: of people moving out of the suburbs and back to downtown (and nearby neighborhoods). Even my hometown of Tulsa has seen major redevelopment in its downtown core, including a Gaslamp-type area that now has trendy eateries, galleries, condos, lofts, and even a Woody Guthrie museum! It takes vision and lots of money to do this, and the downside is that housing costs DO go up.


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