Granite Peak Partners, a Santa Barbara real estate investment firm, broke ground this month on a $68 million, 300-unit apartment community near Williston, N.D., a city that is booming as a result of the discovery and production of the Bakken oil and gas reserves.
The first phase of Dakota Ridge Apartments, consisting of 18, two- and three-bedroom apartment units, is scheduled to be completed in May 2014. The first phase will include six apartment buildings, a clubhouse and infrastructure construction.
When the community is complete, it will contain 10 three-story apartment buildings with 30 units in each. The 4,500-square-foot clubhouse will feature a full fitness center, a game room, a lounge area, a kitchen and community room for entertaining, a business center and a spa room. The 35.5-acre site will include an outdoor sports court, covered barbeque areas and hiking paths.
The two- and three-bedroom, two-bathroom units will range from about 882 square feet to about 1,100 square feet. Each unit will include such amenities as a mudroom, full-size washer and dryer, balconies, granite counter tops and maple cabinets. Four hundred extra-large finished garages to accommodate oversized pickup trucks and more than 200 open parking spaces, many with electrical outlets for block heaters, will be available.
“One of the goals of the project is to create a quality living environment for families,” said Pierre Tada, a principal with Granite Peak Partners. “Most new housing construction in the area resembles workforce housing and aren’t appropriate for families. The Bakken is an extremely important resource that will create jobs and help America become energy independent. We’re excited about being able to make available much needed family-friendly housing to the companies and their employers who are making this happen.”
Another of the goals of Dakota Ridge Apartments is to help relieve the housing shortage in the area.
“The local population has more than doubled in five years as workers are drawn to the area to fill high-paying oil industry jobs,” Tada said. “The population is expected to double again over the next five years. Already, housing occupancy is nearly 100 percent.”
“North Dakota’s harsh weather and the area’s underdeveloped water, sewer and transportation infrastructure, labor shortages, logistics issues and lack of available construction financing for institutional-quality projects, make housing construction in Williston one of the most challenging in the U.S.,” said Bruce Savett, principal with the firm.
Granite Peak Partners selected Adolfson and Peterson of Minneapolis, Minn., as the project’s general contractor.
“Assembling a design and construction team that can execute with severe weather and labor issues and a short construction window is critical,” Tada said. “Adolfson and Peterson has an excellent record of completing projects in remote, resource-constrained environments.”
Intergroup Architects based in Littleton, Colo., was selected to design the project because of its expertise in creating institutional apartment communities in harsh climates. The buildings, for example, will be made with energy-efficient structural insulated panels (SIPs), which provide a 50 percent energy savings over typical wood frame construction. The panels will be installed by Tamarack Construction of Florence, Mont., an expert in SIPs insulation. KLJ engineers from Bismarck, N.D., and property managers Greystar Real Estate Partners with offices throughout the country round out the project team.
Dakota Ridge Apartments is located off Highway 2/85, north of the city of Williston. Apartment reservations for the first phase will be accepted beginning this August. The second phase, with its four additional buildings, will be completed in January 2015.
— Diane Rumbaugh is a publicist representing Granite Peak Partners.