PRLog - July 17, 2012 - MONROEVILLE, Pa. -- Fox Hill Apartments has reached 95 percent occupancy at the half-way mark of an ambitious repositioning project that is bringing the 436-unit rental community to modern standards. Just 18 months after private equity real estate group Tryko Partners, LLC purchased the Monroeville property, its progress is right on track, according to Hirsch Chinn, the firm's vice president of property management.
Situated on 28 acres on Fox Hill Drive, Fox Hill Apartments features one-, two- and three-bedroom residences in four brick-clad buildings. Lifestyle amenities include a swimming pool, tennis court, playground, community room and guest suites. Tryko launched a multi-million-
To date, Tryko has remodeled approximately 200 units, incorporating high-end, modern finishes such as granite countertops and stainless appliances. Tryko also has remodeled lobbies and common areas in each of the property's four buildings, added a community pavilion for picnics and barbeques, and built a sand volleyball court on the grounds.
"Fox Hill was constructed in the 1980s and for several years had struggled financially and with its occupancy level," Chinn said. "Quite simply, the apartments and amenities had become dated and worn. Our firm specializes in turnarounds and recognized Fox Hill as a great opportunity. Several factors - including the success of several neighboring Class A properties, the imminent opening of the 120-bed University of Pittsburgh Medical Center East just down the road and the stability of the Monroeville multifamily market in general - contributed to our confidence in what we could achieve here."
Tryko has seen growth in the number of families and young professionals moving to Fox Hill. "Many of our new residents are associated with the hospital, which will employ nearly 400 people," Chinn said. "Fox Hill really has turned a corner, and the progress here continues to gain momentum. The changes, in both the property's appearance and tenant base, are significant."
During the next 18 months, Tryko will renovate the balance of the property's apartments. The company recently added a fitness center and plans to add a business center to enhance resident services.
Uri Kahanow, Tryko's director of acquisitions, noted that the low cost basis at which his firm acquired Fox Hill was the key to making the project work. "The purchase cost enabled us to go in and upgrade the property to bring the asset to a new level while maintaining competitive rental rates," he said.
The project mirrors Tryko's success with its Emerald Gardens, a 427-unit rental complex in Pittsburgh's West End. The firm purchased that former HUD property fully vacant in 2007 and invested $17 million in its turnaround. Today, Emerald Gardens is 100 percent occupied with a waiting list. Tryko owns 150 additional units at two other Pittsburgh-area properties.
"The Pittsburgh multifamily market is an exciting place to be," Kahanow said. "The population is growing, and occupancy rates are among the nation's best. As a company, we like the growth opportunities we see here and look forward to adding to our local presence in the coming months and years."
Fox Hill Apartments sits 14 miles outside of Pittsburgh, just off I-376 near its intersection with I-76 (the Pennsylvania Turnpike). The Monroeville market is an established, major employment center and shopping hub, with some 5.7 million square feet of office and industrial space, and 5.4 million square feet of retail - including the 1.3 million-square-
Based in Brick, N.J., Tryko Partners maintains a 5,000-unit residential portfolio. The 23-year-old organization purchases multifamily properties, healthcare facilities, and tax liens throughout the Northeast - including Pennsylvania, New Jersey, New York, Maryland and Delaware - and the greater Chicago market in the Midwest. Affordable Housing Finance recognized Tryko among the nation's top 10 companies for completing both acquisitions and rehabilitations in its recent 2012 ranking.