Apartments on deck in Charleston area

Apartment development has been one of the hottest real estate sectors in the Charleston region in recent years.

The local apartment market continues to sizzle.

A 203-unit complex called Proximity is proposed for a 16-acre site off Bees Ferry Road across from Bees Ferry Apartments and not far from the West Ashley Wal-Mart. The nine-building, three- and four-story units are being developed by R.K. Investors of Charlotte. Just 10 of the acres are developable. The rest of the property are wetlands.

Another 27-unit, three-story apartment development called Meritage is planned for Theresa Drive on James Island off Harbor View Road. Theresa Drive Development LLC is the owner, according to document filed with the city of Charleston.

Both projects are scheduled to go before the Design Review Board, which meets Thursday at 75 Calhoun St. at 5 p.m.

The city panel also will consider a two-story office and retail building proposed for 125 River Landing Drive on Daniel Island. The 11,875- square-foot structure is 50 percent preleased, say city documents, which list the property owner as Jeff Birnbaum of S.L. Shaw & Associates.

And the board will review a 6,815-square-foot office building planned for 1404-1408 Ashley River Road in West Ashley. The two-story structure would sit on property owned by Construction Services Group, which has a nearby office.

Ziff Properties of Mount Pleasant didn’t start the new year on the slow track. The commercial real estate firm recently completed transactions on five properties in the Southeast.

Ziff bought the 64,777- square-foot East Brainard Shopping Center, anchored by Bi-Lo, in Chattanooga, Tenn., for $4.75 million. Ziff plans to improve the retail property, according to Christian Chamblee, chief operating officer and director of acquisitions.

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The local firm also shed four North Carolina assets, In Charlotte, it sold Arcade Square, Coffey Creek and Rubin Business Center II, a group of office and light-industrial properties, for $10 million to one buyer. In Wilmington, Ziff disposed of Smith Creek Center, a 476,000-square-foot office and warehouse property. The price was not disclosed.

“Our acquisitions team is continuing to shift focus toward neighborhood retail and Class A self-storage properties,” Chamblee said. “Our recent transactions show more movement in that direction.”

The Charleston-based nonprofit S.C. Community Loan Fund has $5 million available to finance community development projects. Funding priority will be given to affordable-housing multifamily construction loans, food access projects in federally designated “food deserts,” community facilities, charter school facilities, community health centers and business loans in low-to-moderate-income neighborhoods. For details, contact Patrick King at patrick@sccommunityloanfund.org or at 973-7285.

Reach Warren L. Wise at 937-5524 or twitter.com/warrenlancewise.