Has The Coronavirus Affected Bay Area Real Estate Bankruptcies?

MILPITAS- In the form of bankruptcies for two residential developments , new reminders of coronavirus-related economic disruption and confusion, some real estate troubles have started to emerge in the Bay Area.

Land owners, one in El Cerrito and one in Milpitas, are trying to reorganize the finances of the projects under Chap. 11 in the U.S. Code of Bankruptcy, public records show.

In El Cerrito, the construction of Polaris Apartments, a 144-unit residential estate, was proposed by 11965 San Pablo LLC, one of the companies that filed. Long-time housing developer Charles Oewel, who has offices in the Marin County city of Tiburon and in Buffalo, Wyoming, is the key executive behind 11965 San Pablo.

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In Milpitas, the other company, Eighty-Eight Homes LLC, intends to develop 27 townhomes. San Jose resident Mary Ly, who could not be reached for comment, is the main owner of the platform.

Both projects have received municipal leaders' approval. The point of construction has been reached by neither project.

Owners in both ventures owe their assets millions of dollars in mortgages. The lenders have each filed notices of default on the assets and are seeking to foreclose on the respective loans.

Bankruptcy filings are a means of halting mortgage proceedings temporarily. A Judge in a Chap, however. Usually, case 11 forces debtors to file detailed plans with the court for how they expect to repay their debts and reorganize their finances.

For the Milpitas project at 808 S., Greenlake Financial issued a $14.9 million loan. Santa Clara County and U.S. Main St., which is at the corner of Curtis Avenue, Records from Bankruptcy Court.

In El Cerrito, Contra Costa County and Bankruptcy Court records show, TPMC Services offered at least $3.5 million in support for the Polaris Apartments project at 11965 San Pablo Ave.

The Polaris Apartments project was seen by El Cerrito officials as one that could help the city meet goals related to low-cost housing and transit-oriented development.

“The project includes on-site affordable housing units,” El Cerrito planners said of the Polaris Apartments project.

The property is also one mile away and a four-minute drive from El Cerrito BART Station, two kilometers away and a seven-minute drive from Richmond BART Station.

“The site lies within the Transit Oriented High-Intensity Mixed-Use zoning district,” a city planning report stated.

Similarly, Milpitas planners anticipated the Eighty-Eight Homes project at 808 S. Main St. could fulfill beneficial goals for the city.

“The project is a mixed-use development which will provide commercial spaces along with residential development and increase job opportunities within the compact area of Main Street,” Milpitas planners stated in a staff report. The development is slated to include 1,800 square feet of ground-floor commercial space.

The Eighty-Eight Homes development also is a short distance from the Great Mall and the Milpitas Transit Center with its BART and light rail stops.

“The project will offer a mixed-use, high-density community with multiple gathering places,” the city.

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