Bank OZK and Pearlmark Provide $74M Construction Financing for Wisconsin Apartments


A partnership between The Neutral Project and Compass Properties has secured $73.83 million in construction financing for Bakers Place, a 206-unit apartment project in Madison, Wis.

Bank OZK (OZK) provided the senior financing, while Pearlmark supplied the mezzanine portion. JLL (JLL) brokered the deal with a team led by Mike Brady and Phil Galligan.

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Located at 849 East Washington Avenue, the 14-story Bakers Place will comprise 164,707 rentable square feet and offer studio, one-, two- and three-bedroom units, plus 8,400 square feet of retail space. Project amenities will include a library and coworking space, a fitness center, a dog park, an entertainment deck and a lounge. 

According to a release, Bakers Place plans to incorporate green roofs, exposed mass timber, enhanced ventilation, and natural materials for a sustainable and restorative environment for residents. The building’s materials are estimated to reduce carbon emissions by 42 percent compared to conventional construction techniques. Additionally, the property will offer transportation options aimed at reducing emissions. These will include electric bike rentals and a ride-share program.

“We are thrilled to be a part of this team to not only add a unique luxury living option to Madison but also advance mass timber developments. We believe this project will be a catalyst to future developments throughout Madison,” Brady said in prepared remarks

“JLL was instrumental in the capitalization of Bakers Place. Their resilience in providing clarity and direction while navigating volatile market conditions and rising interest rates proved crucial to the successful execution of the construction financing,” Nate Helbach, managing partner at The Neutral Project, said in prepared remarks.

Officials at Bank OZK, Pearlmark and Compass Properties did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

Emily Fu can be reached at