Orion Capital Partners starts Rogers project

by Paul Gatling ([email protected]) 1,670 views 

A Little Rock-based brokerage and development group is nearing completion of a $15 million residential development in Bentonville geared toward “active” seniors. It has started site work for a similar project in Rogers.

Orion Capital Partners broke ground in November 2019 on Hawthorne Heights, a 13.5-acre project along Northeast J Street. The site is roughly 1 mile north of the entrance to Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art.

Ben Lester, a principal and co-owner of Orion Capital Partners who lives in Bentonville, describes Hawthorne Heights as maintenance-free living designed specifically for seniors aged 55 and older.

The master-planned community, designed by Miller Boskus Lack Architects of Fayetteville, includes 54 freestanding homes, each ranging from 1,400 to 1,900 square feet.

The project also includes 12 townhomes at the site along J Street called Hawthorne Row. Those will be available for lease without any age restrictions.

Live Sage is the property manager.

For the Rogers project, Orion completed a pair of land deals in May to buy 15.62 acres for $1.49 million. Little Rock-based Encore Bank backed the deal with a five-year, $16.9 million loan. The property is near the intersection of Bellview and West Pleasant Grove Roads. It will include 86 homes.

The deal was part of a busy year for Orion, culminating in a $14.05 million acquisition in mid-December to buy the 124,000-square-foot Bentonville Commerce office complex in Bentonville.

Limited liability companies headed by Rogers businessmen Patrick Byrd and Alex Baumeister sold the property. They paid $11 million for it two years ago.

“It’s a win for the [previous owners] and us,” Lester said. “It’s a good opportunity for [landlords] who charge lower-than-market rents versus all the newer Class A [buildings]. It’s a good property in a good location. We love the market and the value.”

Bentonville Commerce includes eight buildings and is 84% occupied. Lester said rents at the time of acquisition were $17.75 per square foot modified gross.

Cushman & Wakefield/Sage Partners in Rogers is the property manager.