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Work begins on $12M Longview apartment complex

By Jo Lee Ferguson, Special to the News-Journal
Sept. 23, 2013 at 11 p.m.


Work is starting on a 220-unit apartment complex developers say will have a "real edge" in Longview because of its location.

Paladin Luxury Apartments will be on the Hawkins Parkway extension between U.S. 259 and Tryon Road, directly behind Regal's Stadium 14 movie theater. The complex will be built on about 13 acres of land purchased from Tyler-based Abby Development, which is building a retirement community nearby. Andy Bergfeld of Tyler-based Bergfeld Realty handled the sale.

The city of Longview said permits have been issued for the project, for a total construction value of about $11.86 million. BBL Builders is overseeing construction of the eight, three-story buildings and clubhouse.

Paladin will be just down the road from where Amberwood Place Apartments and its 78 units are under construction near the Hawkins Parkway and McCann Road intersection. Amberwood is a tax credit project that will offer affordable rents based on income.

The Woods is bringing another 46 units off Judson Road.

"We believe very strongly that the location of this project is so good that it's going to give it a real edge," said Kennis Ketchum, president of Dallas-based Portfolio Development, the project's developer. "It's very rare to be able to build where you can walk to things," she said. "You can walk out your door and go to a movie or a restaurant or shop."

Tryon Road is nearby, and U.S. 259 is easily accessible by a nearby traffic light.

"You're sort of in the middle of everything," Ketchum said. "It's a central location for moving around this city."

The target market is empty nesters, single professionals and young families. "Mainly renters by choice," she said, adding that rental rates have not been set.

Amenities will include patios, a fitness center, pool and dog park. Island kitchens, open floor plans, 2-inch faux wood blinds and deep kitchen sinks are among the units' features. Some units will include attached garages, built-in bookshelves or wine racks.

Jackie Warren, executive of the Greater Longview Area Apartment Association, said Longview's existing complexes stay about 90-plus percent full, which means there is room for more apartments.

"It's great to see the growth of Longview because we are becoming a more popular place to live and work," she said, noting the strong job market. "I just hope we don't over-accommodate ourselves and do too much so the market value of the apartments go down."

The "tight apartment market" and "growing employment base" is what attracted the development to Longview, Ketchum said.

"There's always announcements," such as hospital expansions and other businesses hiring, she said. "That's very enticing."

The gated community will feature one-, two- and three-bedroom apartments, with leasing scheduled to start in the spring.

Portfolio Development is building a similar project in Tyler known as Palomar Luxury Apartments, and has complexes in Waxahachie, Temple, Rockwall and Fort Worth.

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