Rockford takes over management of historic Lofts on Alabama

Construction company is expanding third-party property management portfolio.
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Lofts on Alabama has 100 units and is located on the city’s West Side. Courtesy Rockford Property Management

Rockford Property Management has come full circle and assumed property management responsibilities for Lofts on Alabama, located on Grand Rapids’ West Side.

The addition of Lofts on Alabama brings Rockford’s management portfolio to 632 residential units. As the company is growing, it has put increasingly more focus on its property management side, said Monica Steimle-App, executive vice president of real estate development and property management at Rockford Construction.

“We in the past have really performed property management on behalf of properties that we owned, and recently we have really been aggressive and excited to expand into third-party management,” she said.

Rockford Construction built the 120,926-square-foot apartment complex in 2016 by renovating a 104-year-old carriage factory at 420 Alabama Ave. NW and the Hyatt Building with ground-up construction at 421 Alabama. Builders renovated the lofts with the intention of preserving as many of the historical aspects of 420 Alabama as possible. Exposed wood and brickwork complement the high-end finishes.

The complex includes 100 units, ranging from studio apartments to three-bedroom options, and amenities such as a rooftop patio, barbecue and picnic area, community room, covered parking and more. The building also is located next to Bridge Street Market and New Holland Brewing’s Knickerbocker.

Rockford acquired management of McKay Tower back in early 2020, which Steimle-App said was another major third-party management opportunity for the company in addition to Lofts on Alabama.

McKay Tower was purchased in 2020 by tribe-owned Gun Lake Investments and Waséyabek Development Company LLC from Steadfast Property Holdings for $17.5 million.

Lofts on Alabama has changed hands several times over the years. The property was sold in 2014 to Derek Coppess, founder of Grand Rapids-based 616 Development, by John Hyatt, owner of John S. Hyatt and Associates, an architectural and theatrical lighting supplier. Hyatt purchased the property in 1999 for $306,600.

After 616 Development filed for Bankruptcy in 2018, all properties in the company’s portfolio — including Lofts on Alabama — came under the ownership and management of KMG Prestige out of Mount Pleasant.

Steimle-App said the present owner is Lofts on Alabama LLC, an entity represented by several private investors.

For tenants of the building, Rockford will offer its Rock Perks program, so they can enjoy discounts and perks at businesses like Bridge Street Market, One Bourbon, New Holland Brewing’s Knickerbocker and more.

“It’s our way of connecting residents within the community around them … and working with our area merchants that are certainly struggling at this point,” Steimle-App said.

Steimle-App added Rockford is exploring more opportunities to gain third-party management and facilities management in the future.

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