Mortgage Observer

Mortgage Observer

PRC Lands $52M Construction Loan for Student Housing Project

A rendering of the planned development at The College of New Jersey

New Jersey-based developer The PRC Group nabbed $52.5 million in construction financing for its $80 million student housing project at The College of New Jersey, Mortgage Observer has learned.

HFF secured the three-year loan for the 130-unit development, which should be complete by fall of 2015. The trio of lenders was led by M&T Bank, an M&T spokesperson confirmed, and funds from The Provident Bank and Columbia Bank were bundled into the deal, according to Greg Lentine, director of university campus development for PRC.  Read More

Mortgage Observer

Natixis and UC Funds Lend $27M to Convert Historic Baltimore Office To Apartments

Equitable Building in Baltimore

Long Island-based JK Equities closed $27 million in construction funds from Natixis Global Asset Management and Boston-based UC Funds, to redevelop a historic downtown Baltimore building, Mortgage Observer has learned. The three-year, 4.91 percent loan closed earlier this week.

The Equitable Building, at 10 North Calvert Street in Baltimore, dates to 1891 and was acquired by JK last November for $7.2 million, according to published reports. The loan proceeds helped fund the acquisition and will also help with the $32 million bill to renovate the property, currently an office building, into 188 market rate residential units.The redevelopment will also include 25,000 square feet of retail, said Jerry Karlik, the president of JK Equities. Read More

Mortgage Observer

Citigroup and others to lend $1.45B to SL Green, as REIT raises cash for new deals

388 Greenwich Street

The financial musical chairs at Citigroup’s Tribeca offices continue. The multinational financial services firm signed a contract in December to occupy and possibly buy two buildings, 388 and 390 Greenwich Street, which it already occupies. Now, the bank is also lending a whopping $1.45 billion to the current landlord, SL Green Realty, according to a report from Bloomberg News today.

That loan–which reportedly includes bundled funds from Barclays Plc, Wells Fargo and Bank of China—will be packaged into bonds set to hit the market next month. Read More

Mortgage Observer

Sam Chang Closes on West 37th Street Lot, Will Become a Gene Kaufman Hotel [Updated]

Rendering of 326 West 37th Street.

Prolific hotelier Sam Chang‘s McSam Hotel Group secured a roughly $25 million bridge loan to fund the acquisition of a development site on 37th Street between Eighth and Ninth Avenues.

The 10,000-square-foot parking lot at 326 West 37th Street will become a Gene Kaufman-designed hotel with 242 rooms, according to the architect’s office. At 22 stories, the hotel will have a gym, meeting room and ground-level restaurant/bar. The brand is still to be determined. Read More

Mortgage Observer

MBA Report Shows Increased Lending Across All Property Types in 2013


Commercial mortgage origination exceeded expectations in 2013, with $358 billion in loans on commercial and multifamily properties closed, according to the annual origination summation report from the Mortgage Bankers Association.

The report, unveiled earlier this week, showed banks invested $100.5 billion last year–28 percent of the annual volume–while CMBS, CDO and ABS issuers invested $79.8 million, which accounted for 22 percent of the overall volume amount. Life insurance companies and pension funds did $60.2 billion in deals—17 percent of the year’s total. Read More

Mortgage Observer

Deutsche Bank Originates $185 Million CMBS Loan for Luxury Manhattan Hotel

InterContinental New York Barclay at 111 East 48th Street

Deutsche Bank provided acquisition financing to Qatar’s Constellation Hotel Holdings for its 80 percent stake in the InterContinental New York Barclay on Manhattan’s East Side from InterContinental Hotels Group.

The global banking and financial services company originated $185 million in debt with a total commitment of $240 million, a person familiar with the transaction told Mortgage Observer on background. The $55 million of additional proceeds will be funded for upgrades on the hotel over the term of the loan, which closed on March 31, that person said. Read More

Mortgage Observer

Death of Malls Exaggerated: REIT Leaders

Tysons Corner Center in McLean, Va.

Shopping malls–that much-maligned asset class—are actually no thorn in the side of real estate investment trusts, a group senior executives at top REITs said today. The group was assembled at the New York University Schack Institute’s annual REIT symposium, held today at the Pierre Hotel.

REITs are in fact seeing these assets perform well despite the many news reports to the contrary. Read More

Mortgage Observer

State Farm Lends on Rudin Management’s 1 Battery Park Plaza

1 Battery Park Plaza

Like a good neighbor, State Farm is there—especially for high-profile borrowers in Manhattan.

State Farm Realty Mortgage originated a $35 million second tranche as part of a total $110 million loan on the Rudin Family’s office tower at 1 Battery Park Plaza, public records show. The recent financing closed on April 1, following a $75 million first mortgage from State Farm on the 36-story property, which closed in April 2013. Read More

Mortgage Observer

Walker & Dunlop Finances Historic Connecticut Office Conversion

777 Main Street

Bethesda, Md.-based Walker & Dunlop provided $37.2 million in FHA financing to developer and architect Becker + Becker Associates to convert a vacant historic office tower in Hartford, Conn.’s central business district into market-rate and affordable apartments.

The 26-story property at 777 Main Street, which was constructed as the headquarters of Hartford National Bank in 1967, has become a focal point of state and local efforts to revitalize Hartford’s downtown, according to the lender. Twenty percent of the apartments will be set aside as affordable housing units for low-income residents. Read More

Mortgage Observer

M&T Bank Finances Manhattan’s First Micro-Unit Development

My Micro NY Rendering

It was a tight deal for an even tighter development. M&T Bank recently closed a $10.3 million construction loan for the creation of Manhattan’s first micro-unit rental property to be built in Kips Bay. The loan went to Brooklyn-based Monadnock Construction, which is leading the project’s development team, Mortgage Observer has first learned.

The nine-story “My Micro NY” project, located on the northeast corner of East 27th Street and Mt. Carmel Place, will consist of 55 prefabricated apartments averaging about 300 square feet with 40 percent of the units being offered at below market rates. The mini apartments will contain nearly 10-foot ceilings and seven-foot-wide balconies in addition to 16-foot-long overhead loft spaces and full closets. Read More

Mortgage Observer

So They Say: Former NYPD Commissioner Raymond Kelly Talks Safety and Surveillance

Raymond Kelly

Taking a cue from his prior boss, former New York City Police Commissioner Raymond Kelly stepped into the private sector in March, joining the country’s third largest commercial real estate services firm, Cushman & Wakefield, in a new role helping global clients “manage and mitigate risks.” Mortgage Observer looks back on some notable quotes from the controversial police head of 12 years.

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