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Deals & Dealmakers

Square Mile Capital, Pacific Western Bank Originate $93 Million of Construction Financing for Student Housing Project in Gainesville, FL

Square Mile Capital Management LLC (“Square Mile Capital”) today announced the closing of a $93 million loan to finance the construction of Theory Gainesville, a planned 861-bed student housing building located less than a half mile from the University of Florida campus in Gainesville, FL. Square Mile Capital served as the mezzanine lender, with Pacific Western Bank as the senior mortgage lender.

The loan was made to Blue Vista Capital Management, a Chicago-based real estate investment
firm focused on helping investors maximize returns through superior real estate equity and credit
strategies across the risk-return spectrum. Since 2003, Blue Vista and its student housing management affiliate, PeakMade Real Estate, have acquired and/or developed $3.5 billion in student housing properties, representing nearly 40,000 beds at 60 college campuses across the United States and Canada.

Square Mile Capital Principal Harris Neuberg said, “Blue Vista has a strong track record of successfully developing market-leading student housing projects throughout the country and we are excited to be partnering with them on this transaction at the University of Florida. We remain bullish on the long-term demand prospects for well-located student housing properties at top universities, and we believe the Gainesville student housing market will continue to grow over the coming years.”

“The dynamics of the larger schools in Florida, such as UF, are very strong for the foreseeable future. This creates an ideal environment for private sector purpose-built student housing,” added Pacific Western Bank’s EVP and Group Head of Commercial Real Estate, Tom Whitesell. “And of course partnering with Square Mile Capital to provide a capital solution for a top tier sponsor such as Blue Vista is a perfect opportunity.”

Upon completion, the property’s units will be fully furnished with stainless steel appliances and wood-style flooring. The property will have a fitness center, game room, rooftop pool, and open green space between the buildings within the development. The project is anticipated to deliver in two phases, before the Fall 2023 semester and before the Spring 2024 semester.

In 2021, Square Mile Capital originated $6.4 billion of loans, nearly half of that volume in the firm’s record fourth quarter when the firm issued 24 loans totaling $3.1 billion.

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