UDR to Acquire Dwell95 Apartment Building in NYC for $325M

UDR Inc. has purchased the premier 507-unit multi-family building known as Dwell95 in Lower Manhattan from The Moinian Group for $325 million.

August 9, 2011
By Barbra Murray, Contributing Editor

UDR Inc., which has spent the last several months snapping up apartment properties in Manhattan, has entered into a definitive agreement to purchase the premier 507-unit multi-family building known as Dwell95 in Lower Manhattan from The Moinian Group for $325 million.

Located at 95 Wall St. in the Financial District, the building that is now home to Dwell95 first opened its doors in 1969 as an office building, most recently serving as the corporate headquarters of J.P. Morgan. In 2004, 95 Wall came under the ownership of Moinian when the company acquired the nearly 540,000 square-foot tower from DEGI Deutsche Gesellschaft für Immobilienfonds for $180 million. A couple of years later, J.P. Morgan moved on and Moinian commenced the transformation of the office location into the Dwell95 luxury apartment destination. Dwell95 made its debut in 2008.

UDR plans to finance its acquisition of the 22-story property, which includes roughly 7,500 square feet of retail space and a 97-space parking facility, with $275 million in cash and proceeds from the issuance of approximately $50 million of operating-partnership units. The apartment community will be purchased free and clear of debt.

Since entering the Manhattan apartment market earlier this year with the $260.8 million acquisition of the 493-unit building at 10 Hanover St., UDR has been actively snapping up assets in the city. In July, the REIT announced it would purchase the 706-unit Rivergate for $443 million and the 210-unit 21 Chelsea for $138 million.

UDR has every reason to be keen on Manhattan, and its faith in the market, particularly in lower Manhattan, has been validated over the last few months. “We acquired 10 Hanover in April and since that time, effective rents there are up 14 percent,” H. Andrew Cantor, a vice president with UDR, told Commercial Property Executive. “It shows the demand from the World Trade Center being built and a number of leases being signed downtown.” The big news in the second quarter was the 1 million square-foot Condé Nast lease at One World Trade Center, and the third quarter has brought such deals as Oppenheimer & Co. Inc.’s commitment to 270,000 square feet at 85 Broad St. “All of that activity is beneficial for our business.” Presently 10 Hanover is fully occupied and UDR expects that once it gets its hands on Dwell95, located just a couple of blocks away, it will be able to bring the property up to maximum occupancy in no time at all.

UDR’s acquisition of Dwell95 is on track to close by August 31. By the close of the third quarter, the REIT will have shelled out over $1.2 billion on Manhattan apartment purchases.