Harrisburg-based GreenWorks Development plans to finish the Capitol Heights development in Midtown as part of an exclusive student housing agreement with Harrisburg Area Community College.
The developer and college announced the partnership today at HACC's Midtown campus.
GreenWorks plans to invest nearly $1 million to finish three townhouses and construct four new ones along the 1600 block of North Fourth Street as part of the first phase this summer, said Chairman Doug Neidich. The first seven townhomes, which will lease for $600 per month, are expected to be open Aug. 1.
"This is a great (next) step in the entire Midtown rehabilitation and revitalization," Neidich said.
The units will be able to house 26 students, he said.
The company purchased the debt of the Capitol Heights development from Baltimore-based Struever Bros. after the firm was unable to finish it when the economy soured.
GreenWorks had planned to finish the townhomes when a new city tax abatement ordinance was put in place. The last abatement expired at the end of 2010.
The project is known as Midtown Campus Village. It is HACC's first residential housing development, said President John "Ski" Sygielski.
In total, GreenWorks owns 43 lots bounded by Hamilton, North Fourth, Harris and Fulton streets. Additional three- and four-bedroom units are planned in additional phases.
Another 50 lots could be added to the project, said Matt Tunnell, the company's senior vice president. It would then be possible to house nearly 400 students in Midtown.
The developer will own, operate and manage the student housing, according to the agreement.
Neidich and Sygielski said they anticipate filling the initial phase with students this fall and expectations are that demand will be there to build the additional units. HACC has seen enrollment increase by about 10 percent annually in recent years, Sygielski said.
"We look forward to expanding in Midtown and in Central Pennsylvania," he said.
If the demand is not there from HACC students, the units could be leased as general market space, Neidich said. It also is possible students at other schools of higher education might want to lease the units, he said.
Since 2006, GreenWorks — in partnership with HACC — has invested more than $50 million in Midtown Harrisburg. GreenWorks is responsible for the construction and renovation of nearly 300,000 square feet of real estate at HACC's Midtown 2 campus and Campus Square, which includes the Green Center of Central Pennsylvania.
Midtown 2 was once the Evangelical Press Building.