The developer behind the award-winning Yard at Ivanhoe is filling a niche along the Virginia Drive corridor with a new three-story brownstone product that will complement the nearby apartment communities.
The Yard at Ivanhoe was honored with a Golden Brick award for best residential development for 2021 by the Orlando Downtown Partnership. Real Estate Inverland Development President Chance Gordy began assembling properties along N Orange Avenue and Virginia Drive in 2015 and delivered the last of the 591 dwelling units in 2021. The much-anticipated retail anchor, a 13,000-square-foot food hall opened in 2022. The developer also has an approved permit for a sister project, The Yard at Brookhaven, across the street.
Now Inverlad is seeking a conditional use permit from Orlando for the 22-unit Ferris Brownstones townhouse project at the corner of Virginia Drive and Ferris Avenue. The Municipal Planning Board approved the request by consent on May 16, and it heads to the Orlando City Council for final approval on June 26.
If approved, Inverlad be permitted to exceed the 35-foot height limit permitted under the current zoning (Medium Intensity Mixed Use Corridor, Traditional City Overlay, Virginia Drive Special Plan). Designed by Baker Barrios, the townhomes will be 42 feet high and some will have roof terraces. All of the units will have at least three bedrooms and a 2-car garage.
“It was just a natural progression of continuing to build in the neighborhood, and we saw it as a great property that can offer something different than the other projects that we have,” Gordy said. “So it was I think we acquired it comes out last year, well after The Yard opened and after we bought the Brookhaven properties.”
Inverlad bought the .9-acre assemblage in December 2021 for $2.7 million. Gordy said the project will be platted as fee simple townhomes, but the plan is for Inverlad to operate it as a purpose-built rental community.
“We tend to hold our assets longer — we still own The Yard. And so, we’re planning to build it, lease it up and hold on to it probably for a while,” he said.
Inverlad already has received a notice commencement to start demolishing the existing buildings on the property. Gordy said this week he’s gearing up to start on the next phase of The Yard communities: the new Hideaway bar and city park.
“We should be pulling the permit to build the new Hideaway this week or next week, and we’re ready to go,” he said. “Jack Jennings & Sons, the same general contractor who built The Yard are building the Hideaway, and they’ll be building the Yard at Brookhaven, as well. But they should be pulling the permits and mobilizing either this week or next week.”
Brookhaven will add another 265 multifamily units to the south side of Virginia, but construction can not start until the Hideaway relocates to the new building across the street.
“Well, we know for sure is that we have to complete the new Hideaway first, and then give them a little time to move in because their building as part of the Brookhaven site,” Gordy said. “So that the plan is to build that. That’s going to take us into the first quarter of next year, most likely. And then then we’d be in a position to start construction. We’re in permitting right now for Yard at Brookhaven. But the truth is it’s the same thing I’m sure you’re hearing from many developers, we’re just going to kind of wait and see how the second half of this year shakes out from a construction cost-financing standpoint. But we have to build the new Hideaway anyway.”
Gordy said Brookhaven and Ferris Brownstones will likely be constructed at the same time. Since the townhomes are so much larger, they would attract a different tenant than the garden-style units. “They’re a good complement to what we’re building already in the neighborhood.”
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