The Jeffersonian has a new owner with plans to renovate the 410-unit, high-rise apartment building, officials announced Friday.
Local businessmen Joe Barbat and Arie Leibovitz purchased the 1965 building on East Jefferson Avenue in Detroit’s Gold Coast neighborhood last month for an undisclosed amount, officials said. Prior to that, the site had been under ownership of the original developer’s family.
“The new ownership’s vision for The Jeffersonian will elevate the property to the top of the Detroit real estate multifamily market — at a time when rents are tight and rental demand is high,” said Jill Jasinski, senior director of Q10 | Lutz Financial Services, a Birmingham-based commercial and multi-family mortgage banking firm that arranged the financing.
At the buyer’s request, the firm declined to disclose the construction budget.
The 29-story concrete structure was designed by architect Gino Rossetti and has frontage along the Detroit River. Its units range from one-bedroom to four-bedroom apartments. The apartment building also has an Olympic-sized swimming pool, tennis court and 24-hour valet service.
The remodel will include kitchen and flooring updates in each unit. Barbat’s team at the Prime29 steakhouse in West Bloomfield Township will design a lobby coffee bar and casual restaurant for the building.
Joe Barbat, founder and chairman of Barbat Holdings LLC, said that the company’s Houze Living portfolio has four apartment locations in downtown Detroit and has been interested in a riverfront property. The other locations are the Regis Houze, a t3075 West Grand Blvd, Briggs Houze at114 W. Adams, Philip Houze opening by this spring at 415 Clifford St. and Gabriel Houze opening by this fall at 305 Michigan Ave.
“When the Jeffersonian became available we felt it was a natural fit,” Barbat said. “I am very intrigued about the riverfront corridor and continuing to build the Houze Living brand in and around downtown Detroit and other major urban markets.
"Our goal is to offer our residents options to move from a Houze building to building without having to deal with a different management team and the hassle of having to fill out credit reports at different properties," he said. " Once you are approved to live in one of our communities you are approved to live in any of our buildings.”
Barbat said renovations will start as soon as the architecture and design plans are complete. “I estimate that being a few months from now. Our plan is not to interfere with any of our existing tenants,” he said. “We will honor all leases as they exist today.”
The renovation is expected to take place during the next few years, according to Q10 | Lutz Financial Services. Wyandotte-based Thomas Roberts is the project’s architecture firm. The general contractor is Barbat’s West Bloomfield-based Eagle Construction Services.
Village Green in Southfield will manage the property.