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Matt Shiffman has $75 million in projects in Birmingham, Detroit By KIRK PINHO


  • Alden Development makes noise in Birmingham, downtown Detroit
  • Matt Shiffman is son of Sun Communities CEO
  • Shiffman is also a partner in Parc restaurant in Campus Martius

Passion for real estate runs in Matt Shiffman's blood.

Now his Birmingham-based Alden Development Group LLC has more than $75 million worth of projects in Birmingham and downtown Detroit to complete.

The $45 million-plus Brookside Terrace on South Old Woodward in downtown Birmingham and a $30 million-plus redevelopment of the site that formerly housed Peabody's restaurant on Woodward Avenue will bring a pair of new five-story buildings to the swank central city.

"From a family office perspective, it's something we've been doing throughout the country," said Shiffman, the 33-year-old son of Gary Shiffman, the chairman and CEO of real estate investment trust Sun Communities Inc. (NYSE: SUI). The Southfield-based company, which focuses on manufactured housing communities around the U.S., had $833.78 million in revenue last year, up 101 percent from $415.22 million in 2013.

"I find the concept of creating a product and bringing new life into pieces of ground to be very fascinating and a lot of energy surrounds it."

Shiffman has also been making a splash in downtown Detroit as part of the new ownership group of the Ford Building on Griswold Street and as a partner in Parc restaurant at Campus Martius, along with Zaid Elia. Shiffman also said "two or three" other downtown Detroit projects are forthcoming, but declined to reveal specifics other than that they were acquisitions and redevelopments. Millions are expected to be spent renovating the Ford Building in the coming years.

Shiffman said about half of the roughly 180,000-square-foot Brookside Terrace's 27 condominium units have been sold to undisclosed but high-profile buyers, with prices north of $1,000 per square foot and empty nesters being the primary target market. The project, which also includes retail space fronting Old Woodward and event space, is expected to be complete next year.

The Peabody's 162,000-square-foot redevelopment at 34965 Woodward Ave. is expected to have 10 to 12 apartments ranging from 1,365 to 2,450 square feet on the fourth and fifth floors, with a mix of office and retail space below. The project received preliminary site plan approval last week.

Sam Surnow, president of Birmingham-based real estate firm The Surnow Co., called Shiffman "one of the more prominent developers in the area."

"The Brookside project is the very best location in Birmingham for condominiums, and will drive significant economic value to the city through taxes and more people living in the area."

He called the Peabody's site redevelopment one that "will be a great office project that will attract more Class A tenants and rents that enhance the market overall."

The architecture firm on the Brookside Terrace and Peabody's project is Birmingham-based Christopher J. Longe AIA, Architecture & Interiors. Rochester-based Frank Rewold and Son Inc. is the construction manager on the Brookside.

This story has been changed to correct the name of Christopher J. Longe AIA, Architecture & Interiors.

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