Thanks to SwimJet for pointing out and asking for more information of this project.
Laurel Bay Apartments is on Bankers Hill at the intersection of 5th and Laurel. It's actually a pretty nice building in a good location.
The apartment building was purchased by Hammer Ventures in June 2004 for $56.6 Million and was quickly converted to for sale condos.
There are 150 units in the building, County of San Diego records show that only 41 have been resold. Incredibly County records show only two closings in 2006. Sales are clearly slow for this project and given the price declines that are occuring downtown these condos will not sell at the current prices or the units will go back to rentals.
It's also worth noting that Foreclosure.com shows one unit at Laurel Bay is in preforeclosure proceedings.
SwimJet points out and I've also noticed that this building is very dark and there isn't much going on, this anecdotal observation and the hard facts indicate that this project simply isn't going well for the investors that converted the apartments into condos.
Based on my calculations there is around $32 Million dollars worth of condos sitting empty up on Bankers Hill. I arrived at this calucation by subtracting the total units sold as well as the resale of the commercial condos (~$7 Million) less estimated sales costs.
Could this be San Diego's first apartment conversion gone bad? As the national housing bubble deflates many of these projects are giving up on going condo.
You have to wonder how the 41 people that did but into the project will react when the remaining 100 units go back to rental status.