Big deal: Sam Zell’s Equity Residential buys 398-unit Koreatown resi complex

The 398-unit Next on Sixth apartment building was developed last year

Michael Sorochinsky, Steven Fifield, Mike Parrell, and Next on Sixth
Michael Sorochinsky, Steven Fifield, Mike Parrell, and Next on Sixth

Multifamily giant Equity Residential is investing big in booming Koreatown and adding to its portfolio of Los Angeles properties.

The Sam Zell-led firm paid $189 million for the 398-unit Next on Sixth apartment building at 620 S. Virgil Avenue, according to Los Angeles County property records. The seller, Santa Monica-based Century West Partners, completed the development last year.

The 362,580-square-foot property was one of the largest projects to open in the L.A. area last year. Rents for studio units come in around $2,000 per month, according to the property’s website.

Century West was founded by Chicago-based developer Steven Fifield of Fifield Companies and Los Angeles-based Cypress Equity Investments’ CEO Michel Sorochinsky. The firm picked up the Next on Sixth development site in 2014 for $21 million and received permits for the seven-story building the following year.

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Century West and Fifield are currently pursuing similar projects elsewhere in the L.A. area. In April, Fifield took out an $81.7 million construction loan for the second phase of a $150 million multifamily project in Venice. The Catherine Santa Monica residential development will have 282 units and 25,000 square feet of retail space.

The joint venture is also looking to build a 310-unit development in Monrovia, where the Metro Gold Line’s Monrovia Station opened in 2016.

Equity Residential, a real estate investment trust, saw a leadership change last year. Longtime CEO David Neithercut retired and was replaced by Mark Parrell. Zell is chairman of the company and its parent company Equity Group Investments.

The firm owns dozens of properties in the L.A. area and is one of the largest multifamily landlords in the country, but recently its been Zell’s off-color and vulgar comments that have put it in headlines, not its deals. Last summer, Zell came under fire for vulgar comments made about women.