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The Residential Group To Build Another Downtown Duluth Apartment Project

Rendering of SODO in downtown Duluth, a project pitched by The Residential Group and PointOne Holdings.

The developers of a downtown Duluth apartment project are building a new multifamily community down the street.

The Residential Group, in a partnership with PointOne Holdings, broke ground last month on a 256-unit, luxury garden-style apartment project at 3256 Buford Highway, next door to the City of Duluth Public Safety Center. The duo has closed on the site and obtained financing for the project, they announced Wednesday, and plan to deliver the project in the summer of 2022.

The $51.2M project, which is named SODO on PointOne's website, was sold to an entity named TRG SODO LLC for $5.15M in September, according to Gwinnett County property records. By December, the property sold again, from TRG SODO LLC to SODO Apartments LLC, for $6.55M.

The site was home to a collection of small single-story prefabricated metal buildings, including two retail strip centers, which have been torn down, PointOne principal Ben Colonomos said.

Like TRG's first project in the city, The District at Duluth, the new community will be within walking distance to downtown Duluth, which developers hope will improve asking rents for the property, Colonomos said.

“We think walking amenities in a suburban surfaced-parked, four-story, five-story deal is very valuable,” Colonomos said. “There's a rent premium of 15% with those types of projects, having that walking amenity.”

Rendering of the resort-style pool at SODO, part of the amenity package planned at the downtown Duluth project.

Colonomos said the developers are seeking an average of $1,600 per month at SODO. The average rent for a one-bedroom apartment in Duluth is $1,230 per month, according to Zumper.

SODO is set to include a slate of amenities, including a clubhouse, a coworking center with a cybercafé, a fire pit, a fitness center, a pet spa and a dog park. Colonomos said the apartment's design will be akin to adaptive reuse hotels in cities like Charleston or Savannah.

The project will be designed with “darker, richer spaces that will encourage folks to hang around and be a part of the community,” he said.

TRG developed The District, a 370-unit luxury complex — the first multistory, mixed-use development in the city — in 2018 with the partner PPD Holdings. The duo sold the project in 2018 to Principal Real Estate Investors for $83M.

UPDATE, MARCH 10, 3:52 PM ETThe story has been updated to reflect that construction on SODO has already begun.