A Bay Area real estate development and private equity firm is doubling down on The Biggest Little City with not one but two properties in downtown Reno.
SVE Development Partners is under contract for two key properties in Reno's core that it plans to turn into Class A office space with retail - with one project also throwing in residential housing to the mix. 

SVE is a San Francisco-based company that specializes in developing projects and creating funds in locations designated as opportunity zones, said Garrett Gordon, an attorney with law firm Lewis Roca Rothgerber Christie who represents the company.

The first property is the former Woolworth's building in downtown Reno, which SVE is calling 101 North Virginia. Gordon expects the purchase of the property to close by October.

The second property owned by U.S. real estate magnate Herb Simon's Simon Property Group located just north and south of Second Street along Lake Street just west of Greater Nevada Field. The property is being called T3 North.

101 North Virginia
The company is already negotiating with potential tenants for the 101 North Virginia Project, which is expected to come online before the larger T3 North property.

The 97,000-square-foot building will undergo a "gigantic facelift," including a remodel of the building exterior that replaces the facade with floor-to-ceiling glass windows. Inside, the first floor will target retail businesses and feature 18-foot ceilings and a modernized lobby. The top seven floors will offer office space with new interiors.

T3 North Project
The T3 North project will be even bigger and will include residential units as well. The project includes:

A 459,300-square-foot high-rise residential tower that will be 17 stories tall and comprises 448 total units. In addition to ground-level retail, the tower will also have riverfront property facing the Truckee River.

A 362,000-square-foot office tower with about 312,800 square feet of space available.

A 230-unit Podium Residential Building that shares amenities with the high-rise building.

A parking garage with 1,200 stalls during the first phase, followed by 1,000 more stalls in the next phase.

"One hundred percent of the reason these projects are moving forward is because of the qualified opportunity zone program," Gordon said. "This program opens the pool of capital available for projects like (101 North Virginia or T3 North) whether it be direct investment from taxable investors such as hedge funds or family offices, as well as many other forms of pooled investment capital."

Opportunity zone investment also discourages asset flipping because investors are required to hold their investment for several years to get the full benefit, Gordon added.

Lastly, they allow for big projects to be funded without subsidies from state and local governments, Gordon said.

"There are no tax abatements or incentives from the state, county or city for the opportunity zone program- this program only provide federal tax benefits to investors," Gordon said.
"Specifically, the qualified opportunity zone program provides capital gain tax benefits to an investor if their capital remains in the project for at least 10 years."
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