German investor DWS Group buying student housing center in Loop for $77M

CA Ventures CEO Thomas Scott

Deutsche Bank asset-management spinoff DWS Group bought a Loop student housing center for $76.8 million.

Chicago-based CA Ventures is cashing in on the student housing boom by selling the Old Colony building at 407 South Dearborn Street, a former office tower it converted into student residences, according to Crain’s.

CA and developers Keith Giles and Michael Moyer bought the building for $14 million in 2014 before launching a $58 million redevelopment that included a fitness center, rooftop deck and study lounge. The building houses students from Columbia College.

The sale comes as college students seek nicer, amenity-heavy housing in choice locations — and developers are working to meet the demand. Investor sales of student housing reached nearly $10 billion in the last few years, well over the $1-2 billion that was regularly seen before the recession, according to Crain’s.

In August, California-based NB Private Capital bought the The Buckingham student housing tower in the Loop for $73.5 million. A month earlier, 3L Real Estate bought a student housing development from Columbia with plans to turn it into market-rate apartments.

CA Ventures is trying to sell off more than its student housing properties. The local developer is looking for an investor for its just completed 320-unit apartment complex in the South Loop. The firm is also working to offload its 227-unit apartment tower in River West, a year after pulling it off the market. [Crain’s] — Joe Ward

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