Update: HFF arranged the funds for this project.
HFF has been retained to advise and raise necessary financing for the redevelopment of Burlington Town Center, an enclosed shopping center located directly on the Church Street pedestrian plaza in downtown Burlington, Vermont. The redevelopment will consist of more than one million square feet of mixed-use space and provide much-needed housing, revitalized street-accessible retail and Class A office space right in the vibrant heart of downtown Burlington.
Devonwood Investors, a New York-based private real estate development firm, hired HFF to procure equity investors and source debt financing. Devonwood has spent more than two years engaging in a public process to reimagine the Burlington Town Center property. After numerous public and city council hearings, Devonwood was recently awarded a 10-1 City Council vote to enter into a Predevelopment Agreement with the City to facilitate the redevelopment. The Predevelopment Agreement has now been executed by the City and Devonwood.
Burlington Town Center was originally developed more than 40 years ago to provide a shopping destination in downtown Burlington. More than 3.5 million annual visitors now come to Church Street in downtown Burlington. The redevelopment will enhance the retail and services through a revitalized enclosed and street-accessible building with Class A office, residential housing and additional parking in a streetscape environment that will improve access and “stickiness” to the area. The retail portion of the mixed-use property will be expanded to 235,000 square feet and will include a retail podium featuring restaurants, stores, cafes and service establishments facing outward to drive organic foot traffic to the rest of the project and surrounding area. The proposed 325,000 square feet of Class A office space is likely to be 60 percent or more preleased by major Vermont institutions and corporations, with one major commitment for approximately 110,000 square feet already obtained. Additionally, the mixed-use community development will include 310,000 square feet of residential housing that will include up to 274 market rate and affordable units. Negotiations are being finalized with one of the local colleges and universities on a master lease for student units.
The HFF debt and equity placement teams representing the developer are led by Senior Managing Director Coleman Benedict and Director Porter Terry in HFF's Boston office.
“The redevelopment of Burlington Town Center presents a generational opportunity for equity investors to participate with a well-respected developer and operator to create an irreplaceable asset that will become the centerpiece of Burlington’s vibrant downtown,” Terry said. "The offices and residences will be steps away from beautiful Lake Champlain and just a short drive to the heart of the Green Mountains. The project will reinvigorate the shopping experience of locals and visitors and introduce a true urban mixed-use 'live-work-play' environment that will be relevant for today’s downtown Burlington.”