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Massachusetts firm buys Tampa's Element apartment tower

The Element apartment high-rise at 808 N Franklin St. in downtown Tampa has been sold to a Northland Investment Corp., a Massachusetts-based real estate investment company. JIM DAMASKE  |  Times
The Element apartment high-rise at 808 N Franklin St. in downtown Tampa has been sold to a Northland Investment Corp., a Massachusetts-based real estate investment company. JIM DAMASKE | Times
Published Oct. 26, 2017

TAMPA — Downtown Tampa's Element apartment tower sold this week to a Massachusetts-based real estate investment company that plans to upgrade the skyscraper's amenities and operate it long-term as a rental community.

"A gorgeous beacon for downtown Tampa," Northland Investment Corp. chief investment officer Matthew Gottesdiener said of the 35-story Element at 808 N Franklin St., overlooking Curtis Hixon Waterfront Park. "We were looking for an opportunity to acquire a best in class in downtown high rise."

The sale closed Thursday, with a purchase price of a little more than $112.4 million, according to a deed filed with Hillsborough County.

The Element, with 395 apartments, last sold in 2013 for $98 million to a company tied to the Miami-based Crescent Heights real estate firm. It is the fifth acquisition in as many months for Northland, which Gottesdiener said is now Florida's second-largest owner-operator of market-rate multifamily residential complexes, with 32 properties and 9,122 units.

THE SALE BEFORE THIS ONE: Downtown Tampa skyscraper Element sells for $98 million

At 460 feet, the Element is one of Tampa's tallest buildings, with a distinctive postmodern style and a sleek glassy exterior. Though built less than 10 years ago, in 2009, the building's interiors, pool deck, fitness center and club room could all use upgrades, Gottesdiener said.

"We'll be investing millions in the property in coming years," he said. That said, there are no plans to raise rents, convert the units to condominiums or sell the tower again anytime soon. "We look for investments that are built to last," he said.

Contact Richard Danielson at rdanielson@tampabay.com or (813) 226-3403. Follow @Danielson_Times