historic schools converted to apartments

Instead of tearing down historic schools, some developers are turning them into multifamily housing.

As we’ve discussed recently, demand for apartments is only expected to grow in coming years, and the multifamily housing industry will need to step up to meet that demand. One way developers are answering the call is through the redevelopment of existing real estate- most notably, old school buildings.

Filling a void

According to Multifamily Executive, over 18,000 public schools were closed between 2009 and 2010, posing a challenge to communities across the U.S. These old school buildings are not only historic but also hold a soft spot in the hearts of residents, who place a high sentimental value on the places where they-and their parents, children, or even grandparents- grew up. That community pressure, combined with historic building ordinances and the cost of converting the buildings, makes repurposing an attractive option.

Local governments can sell the historic school buildings to developers who have the capital to transform them into multifamily housing. It’s in the developer’s best interests to preserve the character and history of the building in order to increase cache with potential renters, and the community benefits from affordable housing in high-density areas that need it.

Targeting renters

One example of a renovated school turned apartment development is the Riverview at Clendenin School in West Virginia. The 18-unit community is located in an elegant 1914 brick former school building with charming architectural details and plenty of large windows that create an atmosphere filled with natural light. Housing a health clinic in addition to apartments, this multifamily redevelopment is also a great example of the need for accessible senior housing.

Renovated schools could also be a prime target for the microapartment industry targeting young professionals who want to live in sought after urban neighborhoods without breaking the bank.

To learn more about apartment renovations and how to reposition your multifamily property, contact Professional Multifamily Redevelopment today.


Photo by Mark Turnauckas via Flickr CC 2.0