Small lot, small apartments.
Developer Michael Mathieson, principal with Forbes Partnership, is demolishing the house at 3022 Zuni St. this week, the first step toward a three-story structure with 20 micro units.
The 0.12-acre lot in Lower Highlands spans 35 feet between three-story and four-story structures.
The units are slated to be either 315 or 380 square feet, and are expected to rent for $1,300 to $1,450 per month. Plans also call for 325 square feet of office space on the ground floor.
Mathieson knows the street. He built the seven townhomes to the north of the lot, finishing construction in 2014, and has another development about a block away.
“These areas along old trolley lines, they have excellent walkability,” he said of the neighborhood.
Mathieson, acting as 3022 Zuni Street LLC, purchased the property in August 2014 for $475,000 from Cruz and Mary Gutierrez.
Mathieson said he always wanted to own the site, despite not knowing precisely what he’d do with it. Another party had the property under contract before him, he said, but missed several deadlines, allowing him to swoop in.
Mathieson said he spent $15,000 making the house rentable while deciding on a development strategy. Even then, finding tenants was a challenge, he said.
“This was the most dilapidated structure in this area.”
Mathieson said townhomes weren’t practical because he couldn’t fit a driveway on the lot, and that a duplex, while possible, wouldn’t fit in with the neighborhood.
Matt Dendorfer is assisting in the construction of the building, which will be called Zuni 21, a reference to the number of units.
The development won’t have any onsite parking. Mathieson said that was approved by the city before it implemented a moratorium on use of a small-lot parking exemption.
The property will have designated space for bikes and mopeds.
“Several people over here ride their bikes to work every day,” Mathieson said, referencing the townhomes he built next door.