Harristown Sponsored Study Shows Strong Demand For More Downtown Rental Apartments

HARRISBURG, PA–Today, Harristown Enterprises, Inc. released the results of a freshly commissioned “Downtown Harrisburg Residential Update Ver 2” by the national consulting firm, Real Property Research Group (RPRG). In the report, RPRG concluded that downtown Harrisburg has great potential to absorb as many as 300 new market rate apartments over the next three years.

Also, noted in the report is that new apartment projects, like those brought online in the downtown over the last few years, are leasing up quickly. Currently, overall vacancy rates for apartment complexes are around 1 percent—a remarkably low vacancy rate by any measure. Since 2014 about 8 new apartment projects have been placed into service in and around the downtown reflecting a relative “boom” in adaptive apartment reuse projects.

“In late summer and fall of 2016, we brought over 50 new apartments on the market in the downtown and about 80 percent of those units are already leased up,” noted Brad Jones, President and CEO of Harristown Enterprises, Inc. “In particular, the new “Flats at Strawberry Square” 22 unit upscale loft apartment complex has only one unit remaining to lease. We continued to believe downtown Harrisburg could be a strong market for rental apartments—now we have proof and further evidence from this RPRG report that great potential exists for more apartment development,” added Jones.

Other Harristown residential projects completed in late 2016 include 29 high end apartments on South Third Street and multiple commercial spaces for offices, restaurant and retail—18 units are already leased up. Those projects include “Fifteen @ Twenty-Two” or F@tt which is 15 apartments in the six story tower that houses El Sol restaurant on the first floor and “SoMa on Third” which includes newly renovated apartments at 19-27 South Third Street row buildings. In addition, Jump Street—an arts development non-profit moved their corporate offices into 21 South Third Street as part of the “SoMa” neighborhood. “It’s not just about adding more apartments,” added Jones, “but more restaurants, offices, amenities, and services. We are creating an environment where you can walk to almost everything you need.”

WCI Partners, LP and the Vartan Group have also been big players in development of residential in the City of Harrisburg and the downtown.

WCI recently developed the Union Street Lofts (33 units), the Locust Street Apartments (14 units) and Walnut Court Apartments (21 units). Both Locust Street and Walnut Court projects were leased up in 6-8 weeks and Union Street Lofts is already about half leased up after about 2 months on the market. “This new report gives us continued confidence that the market can absorb a lot more apartment units in the downtown and across the entire City of Harrisburg,” added Dave Butcher, President of WCI Partners. WCI will bring on an additional 8 units at 916, 918, and 920 N. Third, adjacent to the Union Street Lofts, in early Spring.

The Vartan Group, over the last several years, developed the Briggs House apartments on Front Street (7 units), the 1500 Condominiums, and the Carson Coover House on Locust Street (6 units). “It has been exciting to see the downtown rental market flex its ability to absorb new apartment inventory,” noted Ralph Vartan, CEO of The Vartan Group. “Harristown should be commended for its leadership in developing new apartments downtown, and for commissioning a report from one of the leading research firms in this field. Clearly there is demand for several hundred more units in the immediate future. This bodes well for the future of our city.”

For more information please contact :
• Brad Jones at Harristown brad_jones@harristown.net or 717-255-1041 or Dave Butcher at WCI Partners, Inc. at david.butcher@wcipartners.com 717-805-1553 and Ralph Vartan at the Vartan Group at 717-657-0100

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