Arun Bhatia Development Organization (ABDO) and Sherwood Equities have received $42 million in permanent financing from Helaba Bank for their recently-completed student housing development at 35 Cooper Square, Commercial Observer can first report.
The debt will be used to pay down the construction loan previously provided by Helaba, Anand Bhatia, vice president at ABDO told CO. This loan represents the second major student housing lending transaction between ABDO/ Sherwood and Helaba, which also financed the joint venture’s 648 bed dormitory project at 318 East 15th Street — which was leased to The New School.
“Student housing projects appeal to us, because they offer the opportunity for long-term development and also the opportunity to provide unique services for a university-age tenant,” said Anand Bhatia.
The firm’s 12-story Cooper Square project, which also has the address of 200 East 6th Street, is now fully leased and being used as student dormitories by Marymount Manhattan College. The residence includes 275 beds, a state-of-the-art gym, TV lounge, study rooms and a landscaped terrace on the seventh floor. It also includes 3,600 square feet of street-level retail.
“The Cooper Square dorm will provide Marymount Manhattan students with a first-rate living experience, and with the retail space on the ground floor, will also serve as an amenity to the greater neighborhood,” said Jeffrey Katz, the chief executive officer of Sherwood Equities in prepared remarks. “We are so proud to work on this project that will add to the fabric of this dynamic community.”
The project meets the needs of students headed to the Big Apple, Arun Bhatia, the founder and CEO of ABDO, told CO. “The younger generation, and the New York model, is geared towards luxury apartment living. Students aren’t looking at only the universities themselves these days — part of the recruitment process is providing a great education but the other part is providing a comfortable living experience in a great area.”
Another major selling point for the students? “We have wifi in every single corner of the building,” said Mr. Bhatia. “When we did a survey and asked students which service was most important to include, wifi came out on top above gyms, above a terrace, above everything.”
ABDO and Sherwood Equities will soon break ground on their next project—a 16-story luxury condominium project at 10 West 17th Street. CIT provided a $48 million development and construction loan for the development in July, 2015, as previously reported by CO. The property was designed by architecture firm Beyer Blinder Belle and is scheduled for completion in spring of 2018.