Exclusive: Oakland's 'lone builder' unveils plans for three new market-rate projects
Madison Park Financial, developer of the only new market-rate apartment building finished in Oakland last year, is seeking approval for three new housing projects totaling 230 units, another sign of increased investment and development interest in Oakland. The projects, according to the developer and the planning department, are:
West Oakland's 2868 Hannah St., which would include 36 residential and 11 live-work units
Fruitvale's 2985 Ford St., near the BART station, which would include 53 residential units and 10 live-work units
West Oakland's 3250 Hollis St., where Madison Park wants to build 120 apartments near the Emeryville border.
The developer is betting that Oakland's cheaper rents and proximity to San Francisco will draw new residents, but also that the Oakland's own charm and character will be a major selling point. More successful market-rate projects would be a triumph for new Oakland mayor Libby Schaaf, who has been advocating for more development.
"There's such a great rent differential between San Francisco and Oakland, especially West Oakland, but with no traffic you're 15 minutes away," said John Protopappas, founder and CEO of Madison Park Financial, who has been called the "lone builder" of market-rate housing in Oakland. Madison Park Financial is planning to break ground on the new buildings by 2016 and open for occupancy by 2017, said Toby Levy, president of Levy Design Partners, the architect for all three projects.
San Francisco Business Times - 03/09/15 - Full Article
Lampwork Lofts Named San Francisco Business Times' Real Estate Deal of the Year 2014 - Market Rate Residential
It took John Protopappas nearly three decades to build Lampwork Lofts, but only three months to completely lease it. Protopappas’ Madison Park Financial Corp. survived multiple real estate downturns and government regulations to revive the historic building, which was Oakland’s only market-rate housing project that opened in 2014. “We struggled for several years,” said Protopappas, founder and CEO of Madison Park Financial. “When we finished, we were the only product in town.”
The 92-unit building in West Oakland required renovations for earthquake damage and the cleanup of graffiti. The developer also had to work with the National Park Service to follow guidelines for historic rehabilitations, meant to preserve the industrial character of the property. The name Lampwork Lofts is a reference to the property’s history as a lightbulb factory, with the distinction of being the first West Coast factory to hire women. “We tried to celebrate the character,” said Toby Levy, president of Levy Design Partners, who oversaw the rehabilitation and architectural design.
San Francisco Business Times - 03/27/15 - Full Article