Reporting a strong initial leasing at an apartment project at the SouthSide Works, Oxford Development Co. is now pushing forward with the Emerald on Centre, a 172-unit apartment building to replace what is now a Masterworks Paint building a block from the East Liberty Whole Foods.
The company briefed the Pittsburgh Planning Commission on the project at its regular meeting on July 14, proposing a project designed by WTW Architects expected to include 110 one-bedroom units.
Ben Kelley, a development manager for Oxford, said he expects the new apartments’ proximity to Whole Foods as well as Shadyside will help the Emerald stand out in a Baum Centre corridor burgeoning with new apartment development.
“We’re very optimistic about the level of demand,” said Kelley. “I think we’ll have a little bit of advantage by offering a little newer product closer to the heart of Shadyside.”
Oxford applied for a Redevelopment Assistance Capital Program grant from the Pennsylvania Department of Community and Economic Development in February. Kelley said he had heard no word on whether the state approved it.
Kelley said Oxford’s SouthSide Flats apartments slated to open this month at the SouthSide Works is leasing at a strong pace.
Adding a final development budget has yet to be finalized on the Emerald, He added the company expects to begin site work and demolition of the established building in September on a project expected to be built on a 14-month construction schedule.