In 2012, Blue Heron acquired Timber Hollow, a 198-unit multifamily community in Chapel Hill, NC. The property is located across the street from the future Carolina North, a new campus extension of UNC-Chapel Hill. This investment represented a strong value-add opportunity to improve existing housing and also to create additional housing to satisfy Chapel Hill’s growing needs, while also maintaining affordability for tenants. As visioned, the renovation and expansion would exemplify the town’s vision of increased density along public transit corridors, environmental sustainability through thoughtful development, and maintenance of affordability.
Blue Heron, in response to favorable market conditions, made the decision to sell Timber Hollow. This investment was highly successful for a number of reasons, including:
Renovations to clubhouse provided residents with a more attractive amenity.
Renovations to existing apartment units were readily accepted, with newly refurbished units leased immediately upon completion.
Upgrading of aging HVAC with new, high-efficiency systems installed throughout all 198 units resulted in an immediate reduction in utility costs for tenants
The rezoning and re-entitlement process, coupled with the proposed development of 109 new units, was carried out in keeping with Chapel Hill’s Land Use Plan of incorporating higher density along transit corridors, while preserving affordability for residents. A key design component of the expansion is giving a new “urban edge”to an otherwise suburban garden-style apartment community along Martin Luther King Jr Blvd., a first for this corridor.
Blue Heron is proud of what was passed on to the buyer, having put in place the foundation for what can become a prime example of smart redevelopment in Chapel Hill.