Portman Announces Construction Is Underway on Reimagining of Historic Savona Mill in Charlotte’s West End

Posted on February 28, 2022

alt text

J.P. Morgan, Argos, Synovus join Portman to finance the project

Charlotte, N.C. (Feb. 28, 2022) – Construction is officially underway at Savona Mill, a 105-year-old textile mill in Charlotte’s Historic West End that is being converted by Portman Holdings into a mixed-use community asset. The project’s first phase is expected to open next spring and will feature office and retail elements – incorporating preservation efforts of the historic architecture – in addition to an outdoor amphitheater, green spaces, a rooftop deck, and a community-centric plaza. Located along the Stewart Creek Greenway, the master plan for Savona Mill incorporates multi-family residential, ultimately completing the vision for a redeveloped, vibrant neighborhood asset within Charlotte’s West End.

As construction gets underway, Portman Holdings also announced that institutional investors advised by J.P. Morgan Global Alternatives have signed on as an equity partner in the reconstruction of Savona Mill, joining partner Argos and construction lender Synovus Bank.

Site prep and clean-up efforts have been completed to bring the existing structure to a state where its true renovation and reconstruction can begin. The south end of Savona Mill will include local retail concepts and an outdoor plaza leading to the outdoor amphitheater that will host live music and public events for the community, which are expected to be delivered in Phase I of the buildout. Savona Mill will offer office tenants a rooftop deck with views of Downtown Charlotte, luxury fitness amenities, and an outdoor promenade overlooking the Greenway. 

“With a renewed emphasis on sustainability-focused growth, we are absolutely thrilled that our capital partners understand the vision for this amazing adaptive reuse project and are in a position to partner with us to see Savona Mill come to fruition,” said Travis Garland, Executive Vice President, Portman Holdings.  

“Savona Mill’s striking brick-and-beam bones will create a distinctive aesthetic that is unique in Charlotte, certainly at this scale, and is sure to be attractive to tenants,” said Stewart Roulston, Executive Director, Real Estate Americas, at J.P. Morgan Global Alternatives. “With a talented developer/partner in Portman Holdings, it’s exactly the type of differentiated investment we like.”

The site is also envisioned to eventually include up to 650 residential units built over multiple phases in an adjacent multifamily community being developed by the Atlanta-based firm’s residential arm, Portman Residential. Sitework is already underway on the residential component of the project, and vertical construction is expected to begin later this year.

Portman Holdings has developed several notable Charlotte projects, including The Westin Charlotte, 615 South College in Uptown, and most recently The Line, a 293,000 SF Class-AA office and retail project in Sound End that will be home to Sycamore Brewing’s new space and a public plaza that opens to the Blue Line Rail Trail. In addition to the multifamily component already underway at Savona Mill, Portman Residential is set to break ground at 2161 Hawkins, a 25-story luxury apartment tower adjacent to The Line, following Sycamore’s relocation a little later this Spring.

Foundry Commercial will handle office and retail leasing at Savona Mill on behalf of Portman Holdings. In addition to J.P. Morgan, Synovus Bank, and Foundry, the project team for the office and retail components of Savona Mill includes partner Argos, Durham-based Alliance Architecture as lead designers, Charlotte-based Edifice as general contractor, the Charlotte office of Kimley-Horn for civil engineering, and Durham-based Surface 678 for landscape design. Foundry Commercial's John Ball, Cody Sundberg, and Claiborne Dandridge will be leasing the office space at Savona Mill. Keely Hines will be handling retail leasing. For leasing inquiries, call 704-523-0272.  

###

About Portman Holdings

Throughout the past 62 years, Portman Holdings has developed over 65 million square-feet of premium real estate around the world with a focus on hospitality, office and mixed-use properties. The vertically integrated real estate development, investment and management company commands a successful global network and has a proven track record with the world’s top financial institutions. Teams in the company’s global offices seamlessly connect to develop, finance and manage a diverse portfolio in the world’s core and emerging markets. Portman Holdings continues to achieve success through investor, partner and client relationships that deliver exceptional real estate projects. For additional information, visit www.portmanholdings.com

About J.P. Morgan Global Alternatives

J.P. Morgan Global Alternatives is the alternative investment arm of J.P. Morgan Asset Management. With more than 50 years as an alternatives investment manager, US$213 billion in assets under management and more than 700 professionals (as of December 31, 2021), we offer strategies across the alternative investment spectrum including real estate, private equity, private credit, hedge funds, infrastructure, transportation, timber and liquid alternatives. Operating from offices throughout the Americas, Europe and Asia Pacific, our independent alternative investment engines combine specialist knowledge and singular focus with the global reach, vast resources and powerful infrastructure of J.P. Morgan to help meet each client's specific objectives. For more information: jpmorgan.com/am.

About Synovus

Synovus Bank, a Georgia-chartered, FDIC-insured bank, provides commercial and retail banking and a full suite of specialized products and services, including private banking, treasury management, wealth management, mortgage services, premium finance, asset-based lending, structured lending, and international banking through 277 branches in Georgia, Alabama, South Carolina, Florida, and Tennessee. Synovus is a Great Place to Work-Certified Company and is on the web at synovus.com, and on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, and Instagram.

About Foundry Commercial

Foundry Commercial is a full-service real estate services and investment company with over 400 employees and more than 60 million square feet of management and leasing across the Sun Belt. Since 2007, Foundry has provided leasing, brokerage, building management, corporate services, and project management services, and is the largest real estate service provider to religious and not-for-profit organizations in the country. Foundry also includes a development and investment platform that is fully integrated into its services business, leveraging its local market expertise to control more than $1.5 billion in advantaged investment opportunities with their JV partners. For more information, visit www.foundrycommercial.com.