There is a perception among developers that if you build a condominium you may as well be building a wasp’s nest. Veering into that market has gotten many builders stung by lawsuits over purported construction defects.
Vancouver developer Elie Kassab has heard those concerns, but isn’t worried. People constantly ask whether he will build any condos soon. And, when he looks around and sees all of the apartments rising, he said it’s a good time to do something different.
“Whenever I go to social functions or meetings, they say ‘When are the condos going to be finished?’ ” said Kassab, president of Prestige Development. “There’s a huge demand (for condos) and people are knocking on our door every day.”
Prestige Development has twin apartment buildings, paired as Our Heroes Place, going up in downtown Vancouver near the intersection Southeast Mill Plain Boulevard and D Street. One of the towers may be converted into condominiums, Kassab said, but that decision is still at least a month away.
If he does go through with it, Kassab would have only the second Clark County condominium project in development. The 24-unit complex would join the 40-unit Kirkland Tower at The Waterfront Vancouver.
Local real estate experts say this lack of construction is a problem. Condominiums are an important piece of a regional housing ecosystem because they are well-suited for first-time homebuyers. They also appeal to older homeowners looking to downsize, freeing up their single-family houses.
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