In a landmark development for Fort Lauderdale’s urban fabric, a groundbreaking mixed-use project in the downtown area has recently obtained a substantial $220 million construction loan. This crucial funding, provided by Little Rock, Arkansas-based Bank OZK on December 26, is set to support FAT Village Project LLC, a Houston-based real estate development company Hines subsidiary. This development marks a significant step forward for the project, reflecting the burgeoning vitality of Fort Lauderdale’s real estate sector.
The loan will fuel the first phase of FAT Village, an extensive 5.6-acre project featuring 603 apartments, 180,000 square feet of Class A office space, and about 70,000 square feet of retail area. This project is a collaborative venture between Hines and Fort Lauderdale-based Urban Street Development, located at 545 North Andrews Avenue and 501 Northwest First Avenue in the Flagler Village neighborhood. Known for its artistic and technological dynamism, this area is poised to enhance its reputation further with this new development.
The South Florida Business Journal recently reported that Tim Petrillo, CEO and co-founder of Urban Street Development, stated that demolition began in September to clear the existing warehouse buildings on the site. This phase of the project also involved the installation of new sewer infrastructure. With an anticipated completion timeline of 18 to 22 months, the project has attracted interest from potential tenants, as evidenced by several letters of intent.
The project’s origins trace back to property acquisitions by Petrillo and his partner, Alan Hooper, who invested approximately $20 million between 2017 and 2020. Though Hines acquired these properties in October 2021 for $57.41 million, Petrillo and Hooper remain vital contributors to the project. Hooper highlighted the project’s uniqueness, notably the inclusion of affordable artist studios designed to enrich the traditionally high-end apartment-dominated neighborhood.
In collaboration with Cresset Real Estate, Las Americas, Hudson Capital, Halmos Holdings, and Urban Street Development, Hines is developing FAT Village as a massive office, retail, and residential mixed-use urban destination. Situated two blocks from Brightline’s Fort Lauderdale high-speed commuter rail station, this four-block creative enclave is set to become the reimagined heart of the City’s art-centric district. Phase I will include two residential towers, retail spaces, and Hines’ proprietary T3 creative office building. Phase II plans to add another multifamily tower and retail and parking spaces. The construction of Phase I is set to begin in Q1 2024, with completion targeted for Q1 2027.