This weekend on Saturday, February 6th, at 10:30 a.m., the official ribbon cutting ceremony will take place marking the completion of a renovation for a building that is 99 year old. Now, the Essex Alley Apartments, in the Union Plaza District is home to 13 residential units. The developers are now focusing on attracting entrepreneurs to occupy the ground floor, and lower level.
This week we speak with co-owner and property manager, Alejo Restrepo about what the vision for their development is and how it integrates into the Union Plaza District, as a whole.
Q. Even though this is a mixed-use development, this is the first time your group has built an apartment property – what is next?
A. This is the first mixed-use project for our group and the first time remodeling a [nearly] 100 year old building!
The 13 apartment units we remodeled flew out the door and we are completely sold out! We are very encouraged as to how people responded to living downtown and especially living in the Union Plaza District. We have a waiting list of people wanting to move into our apartments but there won’t be any available until November 2016. We feel this area has wonderful potential!
Q. The Essex Alley apartments add another living component to the Union Plaza District – what is your vision for the area?
A. The alley is something that turned out incredibly cool and unique for El Paso. It was designed as an outdoor space to complement the whole Union Plaza District. The residents who live upstairs as well as the businesses that are downstairs in the commercial spaces will enjoy this area very much.
Q. How does the alley design fit into the living and commercial aspect of the property?
A. The commercial spaces on the ground level and lower level were remodeled as “vanilla shells”. That means that pretty much everything was brought up to code so that tenants can move in quickly by doing very basic “tenant improvements.”
Q. Now that renters are living in the apartments, the commercial space on the ground and lower level are available to lease, what kind of businesses would you like?
A. We would like to attract businesses that complement the experience of the residents who live in the Union Plaza area and the many people who work close by. Therefore, we are looking at diverse types of tenants that may include restaurants, coffee shops, gyms, mini-markets, etc. They are all welcome.
Q. What is the size of the commercial spaces available and what makes them special for potential entrepreneurs?
A. The commercial space on the ground level is 3,000 square feet and the commercial space in the lower level is around 2,800 square feet. We feel this building is located in a very strategic corner at the very entrance of the Union Plaza District. Moreover, lots of people who live on the west side and work downtown drive down Paisano, to get to work. These people drive by our building every time they drive in and out of downtown.
Tours of the property will be available this weekend Saturday, February 6, 2016 from 9:30am to 1pm located at 513 W. San Antonio Ave. in Union Plaza
For more information call (915) 727-3676 or visit http://essexalley.com/