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Posted on Sun, Oct 30, 2011 : 5:59 a.m.

Still under construction, downtown Ann Arbor high-rises begin signing leases

By Lizzy Alfs


The 14th and final floor of Zaragon West was recently erected, located on the corner of East William and Thompson streets in downtown Ann Arbor.

Joseph Tobianski |

See related story: Student high-rises wield lavish amenities to attract tenants in competitive market

Construction of two high-rise apartment complexes in downtown Ann Arbor is still progressing as University of Michigan students begin signing leases to live in the new buildings when they open in fall 2012.

Landmark and Zaragon West are both on track to be completed in time for the new academic year next fall, developers said.

The 14th and final story of Zaragon West, located at 401 Thompson St., was recently erected, said Rick Perlman of the Chicago-based Zaragon Inc.

“We’re way ahead of schedule,” he said. “We are absolutely going to be ready for next August.”


The 3rd floor of the 14-story Landmark building was recently erected. The high-rise is located at 1300 S. University Ave.

Joseph Tobianski |

Contractors recently built the third floor of the 14-story Landmark development, which was formerly called 601 Forest and is located at 1300 S. University Ave., said JJ Smith, executive vice president of development and construction for Landmark property owner Campus Acquisitions.

“Our contractors are working hard, and construction is progressing on schedule at Landmark,” Smith said in an email. “We will begin to see additional floors be poured fairly quickly from here on out.”

Both high-rises have begun leasing apartments to students, and Smith said availability is already limited for the more “popular floor plans” in Landmark, which will have more than 600 beds in total.

“We continue to sign leases every day and we’ve been very happy with the number of leases we’ve signed to date,” Smith said. “The amount of interest in Landmark has been phenomenal.”

Similarly, Perlman said the leasing at Zaragon West is going well, and he anticipates the 200-bed high-rise filling up quickly.

Smith and Perlman both declined to comment on the specific number of leases that have been signed.

The high-rises range in price from $975 to $1,745 per bed. To help lure student tenants, they are advertising lavish amenities, including fitness centers, tanning beds, a movie theater, high-definition TVs and game rooms.

Both developments also plan to have retail on the first-floor of the buildings, which are located in high-traffic areas near the University of Michigan campus in downtown Ann Arbor.

Zaragon West will have a 2,472-square-foot retail space on the corner of East William and Thompson streets. Jim Chaconas and Brendan Cavender of Colliers International are marketing the space for an annual $42 per square foot.

There is room for about five retail spaces on the first-floor of Landmark, with frontage along South University Avenue and South Forest. The spaces are listed with Chaconas and Cavender for an annual $45 per square foot.

Smith and Perlman said they have tenants in the works for the spaces, but declined to name the potential retailers.

Lizzy Alfs is a business reporter for Reach her at 734-623-2584 or email her at Follow her on Twitter at


Taylor Hulyk

Sun, Oct 30, 2011 : 4:49 p.m.

Happy to hear that students can afford this. Too bad once people graduate, they're more or less snubbed by prohibitive prices.


Sun, Oct 30, 2011 : 3:08 p.m.

Lavish amenities? TVs, fitness centers, game rooms? Don't they have these in the dorms? Sensationalized headlines. The students will be paying for these lavish amenities, you know!