Tucked away behind the hustle and bustle of Fremont East on Bridger Avenue, the Nolana apartments offer a private, tranquil space just steps away from the tourism, dining and nightlife of Downtown Las Vegas. The entire property, re-named after a succulent plant native to the southwest, was remodeled with new desert landscaping, flooring, appliances, light fixtures, backsplashes and more. Originally built in 1940, the Downtown Project spent north of six figures on renovations.
Nolana | Photos by Cierra Pedro
“We have our finger on the pulse of Downtown,” says John Curran, real estate portfolio manager with the Downtown Project, which manages multiple properties throughout the area, including Towne Terrace, The 211 and Shangri La.
What people want, Curran says, is a space that provides residents with the best of both worlds: access to entertainment and a peaceful place to rest their heads. That’s why Nolana has outdoor seating and an extended wooden fence to create a quiet feel in the middle of an urban area. But Nolana isn’t the only property to cater to this crowd. The remodeled community is one of many renovated spaces popping up Downtown, feeding the demand for quality housing in the area.
The Neon | Photos by Zoneil Maharaj
Taking a cue from the success of boutique bohemian communities such as Urbanity Apartments and The Pioneer, the recently-renovated The Neon apartments, located in the medical district near the Las Vegas North Premium Outlets, features a courtyard designed by award-winning firm Bunnyfish Studio complete with a large Buddha fountain, hanging pod seats, games and an organic vegetable garden. A new coat of blue and red-orange paint help give way to a more appealing exterior. Inside, the steel gray theme offers a simple but modern living space. Add free community activities such as yoga, and you’ve got a home.
Nearby, Revive is doing just what its name suggests. With complexes in both the medical and arts districts, the all-micro studio communities are being transformed into what developers describe as a hip, modern-retro style tailored to each location. Revive Arts District taps into its neighborhood, employing local graffiti artists to wrap its exterior in vibrant pieces. Similarly, Revive Medical District will feature a mural of a heartbeat.
“I’m a [Las Vegas] native. I’ve seen where Downtown’s gone,” says Christy Drawn, a regional manager with Advanced Management Group, which runs both Revive complexes along with The Canvas and the recently-acquired Stax Studios, also in the Downtown area. “The goal is to be a part of the revitalization of Downtown and keep the momentum going. We see this as the way to go.”
The units at Revive, Stax and The Canvas are considerably small, ranging from 225 square feet at Revive Arts District up to 450 square feet at The Canvas for studios—Revive Medical District offers larger two bedroom spaces at 875 square feet. But the goal isn’t necessarily to house families, it’s to cater to the influx of millennials and “all-in-ones,” those who desire a variety of amenities on-site while working and playing in their surrounding neighborhoods, Drawn says.
The collective goal for all of these developments is to connect the entire Downtown area and make it more walkable, with housing and retail options in close proximity to one another. The City of Las Vegas shares this vision and is already investing in infrastructure to support it.
Renderings of Revive Arts District
Set to break ground this fall with a tentative completion of summer 2019 is the 3rd Street Linear Park. The street will be narrowed from Charleston Boulevard to Bonneville Avenue to create a succession of sustainable open spaces featuring green landscaping, hanging lounge chairs, exercise equipment and recreational spaces.
“It’s a unique example of how you can create urban open space,” says Robert Summerfield, director of planning for the City of Las Vegas.
Even without this new infrastructure in place, Downtown already claims the highest walk scores in the city. According to WalkScore.com, the Arts District ranks as the most walkable neighborhood with a score of 84 out of 100 with the 89101 zip code sitting on top at 66, compared to Summerlin’s 22 and Henderson’s 30. It’s a testament to Downtown’s continued evolution.
Just five years ago, there was less energy in the neighborhood, more crime and few happy hours, Curran says. Now?
“It’s a living, breathing organism,” he says.
Four New Constructions to Keep on Your Radar
Located in the heart of the Arts District, the newly-constructed C3 Lofts will offer 48 modern studios and two bedroom apartments with floor-to-ceiling windows, quartz countertops, tile backsplashes, communal spaces and a gated entrance. Coffee shops, restaurants, gyms, yoga studios and local breweries are all within walking distance. According to Jordan Mynarcik, a leasing agent for the property, the building will be ready for move-in at the end of June, with half of the units already pre-leased.
Slated to break ground in late fall, Aspen Heights will be the first residential development at Symphony Park. The property, located within close proximity of The Smith Center and Cleveland Clinic Lou Ruvo Center for Brain Health, will feature 290 units consisting of studios and two bedroom lofts, according to project manager Patrick Brennan. The average size of the units will be around 900 square feet, he says. But that doesn’t mean that they’re small. “The living space hasn’t shrunk, it’s gotten more efficient. … Every nook and cranny gets redesigned [so] it creates a more dynamic space,” says Brennan, who spoke at a recent Downtown residential fair. Adding additional spaces on the property to hang out in creates secondary living spaces, he says. In all, the project will make Downtown Las Vegas feel more like a “city.” “When you can get rid of the car, when you can walk, when you are being more social … it does enrich your life,” Brennan says.
Construction of The Benjamin underway | Photos by Cierra Pedro
Local developer Chris Gonya wanted to create a product that he says doesn’t exist Downtown yet: the midscale apartment community that is neither a high-rise nor a single-family house. The Benjamin, currently in construction at the corner of Sixth Street and Bonneville Avenue, is a smaller project that still meets the demand for housing in Downtown, Gonya says. The property will feature 12 multi-level townhomes with retail spaces on the first first floor. Gonya partnered with the Peccole family, which has several developments in Summerlin, and Tom Schoeman of Main Street Development. The team took care to make sure The Benjamin fits into the Downtown neighborhood and honors the property’s past, Gonya says. For starters, its name is a nod to Benjamin Bonneville, an explorer after whom Bonneville Venue is named.
Scheduled to open in September, the Downtown Project-operated Fremont 9 will be the first mid-rise development on Fremont Street (at Ninth Street, hence the name). Located next to Atomic Liquors, the more than 250,000 square feet, five-story development will feature 232 units spread across a variety of floor plans, from studios to three-bedroom units, along with 15,000 square feet of retail space on the ground floor, five live/work spaces and a host of common areas for working and hanging out. According to the Downtown Living website, the property boasts a “hip residential lounge and resort-style pool”—all within the Fremont East entertainment district.