The housing boom rolls on in West Palm Beach.
West Palm developer Neil Kozokoff of Parkland Companies expects to receive a construction permit this month for 14 townhouses in the historical Grandview Heights neighborhood of the city.
The three-bedroom homes will range in size from 2,200 square feet to 2,400 square feet and in price from $599,000 to $700,000. The project, at 1200 Lake Avenue across from Howard Park, is named Park Slope. That’s about $272 per square foot as a starting price.
“Grandview Heights is a classic urban neighborhood: right behind CityPlace, just off the hot South Dixie Highway corridor and a five-minute drive from I-95,” allowing a reasonable commute for residents who work elsewhere in South Florida, Kozokoff told The Real Deal. “This is a historic neighborhood with character, which restricts what you can do, but gives us a really nice palette.”
The Art Deco-style homes will come with fancy finishes and appliances. The decision to go Art Deco was inspired by the nearby Armory Art Center, which also has that style. “We then engaged the neighborhood in the design process through the neighborhood association, and the final design reflects some of the neighbors’ tastes,” Kozokoff said. He hopes the project can finish by year-end.
So who are the likely buyers? First, Kozokoff envisions young families who will appreciate the fact that the neighborhood is in the town of Palm Beach’s well-regarded public school district. Second would be couples without children who want to be near the cultural, entertainment and restaurant attractions of downtown West Palm and the South Dixie corridor, he said. Third would be baby-boomer, seasonal residents who “aren’t interested in golf course communities,” Kozokoff said. “They like the city and want to be able to walk to places and be close to the action.”
Jonathan Gladstone, a West Palm real estate developer who is looking at investing in residential properties around South Dixie himself, likes Kozokoff’s project, but thinks the prices are too high. “At Magnolia Court [an upscale town house project on South Dixie], prices are in the $500,000s, and that’s ground zero” he told TRD. “I think it’s a problem.” In addition, “some of the surrounding neighborhood isn’t so great,” Gladstone says. “It’s hit or miss.”
But Kozokoff thinks he has his pricing right. “It’s under $300 per square foot, which is consistent with older homes in the neighborhood.”
Meanwhile, Kozokoff estimates his 99-apartment building under construction at 312 23rd Street, in West Palm‘s Northwood neighborhood, will be completed in November. The one- and two-bedroom apartments will rent from about $1,400 to $2,000 a month. And he hopes to begin construction on a twin building within a year, he said.
Gladstone is more enthusiastic about this project. “He was early to get there and has reasonable prices,” Gladstone said. “That area is still warm, not hot.”