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Work starts on new 'micro-unit' Central West End apartment project

The apartments range from studios to two-bedrooms, as well “micro-units,” which will have an average of 386 square feet
Credit: KDG/ St. Louis Business Journal
KDG’s 205-unit multifamily development at 4545 Laclede Ave. in the Central West End

ST. LOUIS — Clayton-based real estate developer KDG has started sitework on its new 205-unit multifamily development in the Central West End.

The development is a seven-story apartment building on a 1.4-acre site at 4545 Laclede Ave. that KDG acquired in 2018 under the Koman Group. The firm paid $4.7 million to acquire the property from Park East Apartments LLC, according to real estate data firm Reonomy.

Planned amenities will include a hearth room, curated gallery wall, club lounge, pool terrace, outdoor grilling island, fitness studio, yoga studio and golfing green.

L. Keeley Construction is the general contractor with Chris Cedergreen leading the design and Lamar Johnson Collaborative as the architect of record and interior designer, KDG officials said. An investment cost was not disclosed. The project is slated to be delivered in spring 2022.

The apartments range from studios to two-bedrooms, as well “micro-units,” which will have an average of 386 square feet. Rental rates were not disclosed, but apartments typically lease for $1,356 in the Central West End, 36% higher than the regionwide average, Berkadia data shows.

“We were seeing this trend well before Covid,” KDG President Jason Braidwood said. “Our residents require flexible work-from-home environments as secure as they are collaborative and communal. The result is functional, yet affordable, spaces for those seeking a class A product in the Central West End."

Micro-units generally ask for lower rent than an average-size apartment but often have higher occupancy rates, according to a 2014 report from the Urban Land Institute. Micro-units are found more often in major metropolitan cities such as New York, Los Angeles, San Francisco and even Dallas and Philadelphia. Typically, the units are best suited for neighborhoods that draw in young professions and have walkability to retail, restaurants and other amenities, the report found.

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