A new apartment building in downtown Vancouver, due to open in July 2024 and cost more than $80 million, marks the latest project by one of the city’s busiest developers in recent years, Hurley Development.
The five-story Adera apartments is an all-new ground-up construction project that will occupy a full city block at 400 Washington Street, Jason Ritchie, the company’s director of innovation and creative, confirmed.
“There will be 186 residential units for rent in this building,” said Ritchie, in a conversation that also included his colleagues Nathan McNicholas, senior project manager, and Nik Sernande, vice president of architecture and design.
The building will total 258,000 square feet with units ranging in size from 600-square-foot studios to two-bedroom family homes. Some ground-floor units, referred to as urban studios, will have exterior access on the front of the building as well as interior access.
The project will also have 5,000 square feet of street level retail space. “We are talking to national groups as potential tenants,” Ritchie said. Additionally, there will be an underground parking garage.
Among the planned features to make life in Adera apartments more attractive include a fitness center on the ground floor, an open lobby area with grouped spaces where people can gather, electric vehicle chargers, and a second-floor clubroom including a media room for movie-viewing. The second floor is also where a courtyard stretches all the way up to the sky. This area will have a patio and barbecue equipment, along with artificial turf for lawn games and sitting out in the sun.
The Hurley team expressed confidence in attracting tenants, both from established Vancouver inhabitants and from the huge influx of new residents moving to the city, especially from Portland and other nearby Oregon locations. Ritchie shared that Michael Wilkerson from independent research firm EcoNW recently said that Vancouver, and Clark County more broadly, is emerging as the engine of the Portland metropolitan region in job creation, business development, and population growth.
“Portland suburbs in Oregon are not following the same trend,” Ritchie said. “Downtown Vancouver has a lot of momentum going for it, not just the waterfront. Young professionals are our main target market, but it is not limited to that. Here in Vancouver you get a lot of variety.”
If there is any company well-placed to serve that dynamism and the rising housing demand, it’s Hurley Development, founded and owned by local native Ryan Hurley. The team said the company also has an in-house attitude that’s well-suited to that important work.
“We’re not in it to build one more apartment or another retail center to cash in on the community. We want to bring life – through things we can quantify,” Ritchie stressed. “We are in the process now of quantifying all the jobs we have created, the local tax income, the salary income, the units we have put out there.”
“We are focused on being intentional about bringing quality win-win projects to the community,” said McNicholas. “We specifically target Vancouver because we have a good understanding of the community here. We target areas that can really benefit both from an economic and a cultural standpoint – seeking to create places where people can gather and want to live.”
In securing its finances in this project, the company has partnered with capital partners and Trez Capital, out of Canada. “This was our first partnership with Trez, and now they are also a partner with us on the Woodin Creek project in Battle Ground,” McNicholas shared.
According to the company, 20% of the units at Adera will be reserved for those with limited income. Company President Ryan Hurley recently expressed the company’s alignment with the city’s goal of creating more affordable communities in Vancouver. “We want to bring life to Vancouver, and one way we do that is through affordability.” However, Hurley team members said it is too early to state a rental price for any of the building’s units, with market trends likely to continue their rapid changes between now and the July 2024 opening.
The company has conducted most of its projects in or near Vancouver. One of those is the Hurley Building, situated just a few blocks away at 275 W 3rd Street, that houses Hurley’s own corporate headquarters.
The majority of Hurley’s projects are single-family neighborhoods, residential mixed-use buildings or retail developments – with retail, in many cases, including restaurants and cafes.
Ritchie said the new project has benefited from fruitful cooperation with local public officials. “The City of Vancouver has been extremely helpful with shepherding the project through the permit process and making sure we were able to meet our goals and the city’s goals to bring a new LEED Gold mid-rise apartment community to the Vancouver skyline,” he stated.
As for the name for the new apartment development, this has been – like most of Hurley’s projects – the result of a multi-stage branding exercise involving the company’s creative team and Ryan Hurley himself. “We were looking for names that felt accessible; had a sophistication as well as being casual and comfortable for anyone to connect with,” Ritchie said.