American Residential Group intends to transform the Tribune Lofts
apartment complex into for-sale condominiums.
That marks a major shift for what many analysts called a
"trailblazer" project. When launched in late 2001, this Brady
District development was one of the first modern efforts to
jumpstart residential living in downtown Tulsa.
"This is actually something I think has been a long time coming
for the Tulsa market," said Raymond W. Lord, a principal and partner
with NAI Commercial Properties of Tulsa. "I think it's a neat
direction; I really do. I think obviously we're going to see a lot
more of it."
Although ARG officials could not be reached for official comment,
real estate analysts confirmed the move. The Tribune property offers
35 lofts over six floors immediately north of the railroad tracks,
the units ranging from 704 to 2,288 square feet.
David Z. Forrest, the Tulsa multifamily broker for CB Richard
Ellis of Oklahoma, said the change casts no negative reflections on
the difficulties in cracking the downtown residential market, but an
effort to maximize ARG's investment in the property.
"That's the only reason anybody does that," said Forrest. "That
allows them to make the most dollars in the way they want to make
Aaron Hargrove, the Tulsa market multifamily specialist for
Commercial Realty Resources Co., suggested condo sales also would
provide a higher return for that property than selling it as an
apartment complex, even one like the Tribune Lofts that had operated
with a waiting list for several years.
"It's not easy managing a small apartment complex," said
Hargrove. "As a management company, you would be much more
interested in running a 230-unit apartment complex as opposed to a
35-unit apartment complex. That may influence their thinking on the
"The guys that own that are smart and successful businessmen," he
said. "I don't know if they've ever, that I've seen, made a bad
The ARG move follows successful efforts by The Philtower LLC to
convert floors 12-20 of The Philtower into condominiums, which the
group completed and sold in less than a year. It also would act in
advance of apartment and loft projects coming online over the next
two years at the Sager Building and the Mayo Hotel.
Lord said moving now will give ARG a strong head-start in
competition with these projects.
While ARG continues to lease units at Tribune Lofts, officials
said the company's intention is to turn all units into condos. …