SomeraRoad is ready “to push the build button” on what may be its biggest ground-up construction project yet at the SouthSide Works, breaking ground Tuesday on what the firm is calling The Park, a 247-unit apartment building on a riverfront parcel at the mixed-use master plan.
With the company recently finishing the conversion of the former movie theater into the Box Office office redevelopment, and the town square fenced off and under construction for a revamp, SomeraRoad’s goal is to fully work to reorient the SouthSide Works into a more residential focus that serves to better support the office and retail at the complex.
“To us, this couldn’t be a more perfect or idyllic place to live,” said Ian Ross, founder and principal of SomeraRoad. “You’re really at the center of all of it.”
It’s a project for which SomeraRoad got the go ahead on from the Urban Redevelopment Authority of Pittsburgh last fall when the URA board voted to sell the 1.78-acre parcel to the development firm for $756,000. As part of the deal, SomeraRoad agreed to convert some of the apartments elsewhere at the SouthSide Works into units that meet standards of affordability while The Park is slated to be a luxury development.
Marketing materials for The Park call it “low key luxury” for an apartment address to offer a rooftop terrace and pool, space for remote work, and a fitness and meditation center, among others.
Of course, the company is playing up The Park’s site along the riverfront and the South Shore Park, including the trail that is part of the Great Allegheny Passage.
The Park is now more expensive to build, originally estimated to cost in the range of $75 million to build, but is now expected to be $85 million.
It’s an investment for which Ross was grateful for the opportunity, praising city powers for the foresight to build a tunnel park, putting the active rail line under ground through the SouthSide Works to enable riverfront access and development.
“I don’t think people truly appreciate how unique this site is,” he said.