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March 5, 2021 Deal Watch Today

Spinnaker eyes $63.3M mixed-use redevelopment of downtown Hartford’s 55 Elm St. office building

HBJ Photo | Joe Cooper The former state office complex at 55 Elm St. is set to be converted into 164 new apartments.

It’s been just over a year since Spinnaker Real Estate Partners acquired the historic 55 Elm St. office building -- and nearby parking lots -- across from downtown Hartford’s Bushnell Park for $6.8 million.

Now the Norwalk-based developer is moving forward with plans to redevelop the property, formerly home to the Attorney General’s office and other state agencies. 

Spinnaker, which is also in the process of developing the $26 million residential mixed-use apartment project at the intersection of Park and Main streets in Hartford, has submitted plans with the Capital Region Development Authority to redevelop the 300,000-square-foot office building at 55 Elm St. into 164 residential units as well as co-working space and a restaurant. 

Up to 70 units of the $63.3 million project will be constructed so they can be made available for hotel rooms, if the market justifies the need, according to a project proposal submitted to CRDA, whose housing committee has approved the plan. 

Spinnaker is asking CRDA for $13.5 million in support, including a $7 million construction loan and $6.5 million historic tax credit bridge loan.

The rest of the project financing includes: a $32.5 million conventional mortgage; $7.3 million in equity; and $10 million in federal historic tax credits, records show. 

Eighty-percent of the units will be market rate while the rest will be affordable units, according to CRDA.

CRDA’s full board of directors will consider the proposal later this month, according to Executive Director Michael Freimuth. 

West Hartford’s Simon Konover Co. was originally a partner in the project, but is no longer involved; Spinnaker bought out their holdings,  Freimuth said. 

The land holdings include a trio of nearby parking lots at 71 Elm St., 94 Hudson St. and 108-110 Capitol Ave., for about $967,000, records show.

Spinnaker co-partner Matthew Edvardsen told HBJ a year ago the firm was planning  to renovate the offices hotel, office and retail use. 

Spinnaker inked a purchase-contract on the building in the summer of 2019 after Simon Konover put the historic limestone building on the sales block in spring 2018.

The building was entirely occupied by state employees until the majority of workers relocated in late 2019 to the newly renovated State Office Building on Capitol Avenue. 

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March 6, 2021

Love it! We need more housing in and around the nation's oldest municipal park, in one of the nation's most historic and walkable downtowns.

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