Arbutus House rendering



Dear Investors and Valued Partners,

With Ben off on a well deserved vacation in the wilds of Africa, I’ve been asked to step in and send a quick update on some of our development activity. For those of you who don’t know me, I’m the Head of Development for Great Expectations. I have a deep background in housing development, both as a GC and working in the startup world on new innovative models. I share the rest of our teams passion for the dual mission of below market rents for residents and above market returns for investors.


Betula House

50-Unit Opportunity Zone project in Seattle, WA

Betula house re-leasing continues to progress well with (3) additional 12 month leases signed. We saw demand heat up for both residential and retail tenants in June, as prime rental season in Seattle kicked off. We have LOIs in hand for all three retail spaces now, which is very exciting. This means that we will soon be able to kick off our refi process and declare the project “stable”.

Cornus House

199-Unit Opportunity Zone project in Tacoma, WA

Pouring the slab on grade

We began the month of June with the milestone goal of pouring the L1 slab on grade by the 22nd.


Months of labor and quality control goes into the prep for these pours. Prep includes smoke testing the vapor barrier, placement of under slab plumbing, electrical and reinforcing steel.


Pour day activities lasted from 6am-9pm, utilizing ~25 full concrete mixing trucks and a team of 30. The work consisted of the following:

  • Level, smooth and apply densifier curing agent to keep slab hydrated
  • Cut the concrete along control joints
  • Place curing blankets atop the slab which were covered in water


The slab on grade must be an exceptional finish, as it will remain exposed in many of the units and common areas. Once the slab is up to strength, the deck above is formed, and MEP subs begin their layout.


We always keep an eye out for risk mitigation, alongside our GC partner. To date, the project has contracts issued for 85% of the total construction scope. More certainty = better results and less surprises.
The upcoming project milestones include placement of the L2 slab, and forming the L3 deck.


Project schedule shows a December finish date, 2024, which we will look to continue to improve upon

L2 deck formed, with plumbing and electrical sleeves installed

The construction team post pour.

Arbutus House

300-Unit Opportunity Zone project in Tacoma, WA


We have continued our commitment and confidence in the Tacoma market through further investment in our newest multifamily project, called “Arbutus House”. 

Design on the Arbutus House began this spring, and we are excited to provide a sneak peek rendering above. The building will be 300 units, 40% parked, with 3,000sf of retail space. The unit sizes will be larger than our traditional Seattle eco-apartments but still very efficient with an overall average unit SF of 485. The “E” shape allows natural light into (2) different courtyards, and the podium provides prominent street presence.

We are confident in the success of this product type, with thoughtful unit design/functionality, and market rate finishes at below market rents.

Arbutus will be vesting it’s plans in the 2018 code cycle, saving a considerable amount of potential construction cost.

The 2021 code, which begins October, will add triple glazing of windows, remove the ability to provide natural gas as a heating source for hot water, and add reinforcing steel/thickness of concrete shear walls.

Arbutus will kick off in early 2024 as we acquire the land, with vertical construction about a year after.  

Thank you!

As always, thank you for your support and please do not hesitate to reach out with any questions!

Alec and the GE/Arboreal team.

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