SAN ANTONIO – Major construction at a boarded-up apartment complex had neighbors scratching their heads.
"I had to call you guys because I wasn’t sure what was being done," concerned neighbor Connie Marszalek says.
A few years ago, SAHA had moved residents out of Park Place (on Nacogdoches near O’Connor on the northeast side) because it couldn’t afford costly foundation repairs. In fact, it owed money on the property.
Neighborhood leaders asked News 4 to follow the money trail to find out who’s now paying for the big makeover.
"We thought, are they doing this correctly?" Marszalek says. "Whose money? What money? Who is the engineer? Who is developing?"
We got neighbors some answers: a California investment group bought SAHA’s loan at a discount from the federal government.
SAHA is now off the hook for the money it owed, and now a group called DWOLV, an offshoot of Luminous Ventures, owns the title and the property.
"When we bought the loan, everything was boarded up,” investor Matt Campbell says. "You couldn't see one window. There were boards on all the windows."
Not to mention plants growing on the windows and graffiti spray-painted on the walls.
Crews are working to make sure the eyesores are gone forever.
"When this gets done you won't even recognize it," Campbell says.
The units are being restored into upscale apartments that will be nearly 1,400 square feet apiece.
"We've actually renamed it The Grand Apartment Homes," Campbell says.
Crews are fixing foundations and redesigning the public areas.
"Really trying to do it the right way," Campbell says. "Not cutting corners."
Marszalek got to tour the construction site and says she hopes the new apartments will revitalize the area.
"I think it's going to be an asset to the community," she says. "And if it's not, I'll be around to make sure it gets corrected."
The same investors actually bought a property on the east side a few years ago, and like Park Place, it was overrun with crime. They turned it around and now The Place at Commerce on East Commerce has won awards.
Campbell says he hopes their track record helps make Park Place a success.
He says units will be available to lease in about 60 days at The Grand and any questions can be directed to United Apartment Group