22-year veteran will lead the firm’s growing Affordable Housing & Tax Credit practice, counseling Florida real estate firms through all phases of development as demand for affordable housing mounts
July 7, 2020 – Miami, FL – Bilzin Sumberg, one of Florida’s leading commercial law firms, is bolstering its Land Development & Government Relations Practice with the addition of Terry M. Lovell, who is among the state’s preeminent practitioners in affordable housing finance matters. Lovell joins the firm as a partner and will head its Affordable Housing & Tax Credit practice, specializing in financial closings on behalf of developers building and operating affordable housing communities in Florida.
Through his 22-year career, Lovell has represented many of the largest affordable housing developers in Florida, including Related Urban Development Group, The Gatehouse Group, The Vestcor Companies, Magellan Housing, and the Banc of America Community Development Corporation. Lovell has also represented clients with projects in Georgia, Louisiana, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, and the U.S. Virgin Islands.
Lovell and Bilzin Sumberg attorneys have collaborated on several matters, including Florida’s two largest affordable housing developments. In Tampa, Lovell and members of Bilzin Sumberg’s Construction Group helped pave the way for the $450 million Encore District, a public-private partnership between the Tampa Housing Authority and the Banc of America Community Development Corporation. In Miami, Lovell teamed up with lead counsel Bilzin Sumberg and others to usher in Related Urban’s $300 million redevelopment of one of the nation’s largest and oldest public housing projects, Liberty Square. The redevelopment will replace 709 public housing units built in the 1930s with 1,455 mixed-income residences and accompanying retail to be completed in phases through 2023.
Lovell’s arrival at Bilzin Sumberg deepens the firm’s expertise in the affordable housing space, putting its attorneys in position to counsel clients through all phases of development – from land acquisition and government procurement, to environmental due diligence, land use and zoning, financing, and construction.
“Florida is home to one of the country’s most robust real estate markets, and the affordable housing sector, in particular, stands out as an area of growing need,” explains Bilzin Sumberg Managing Partner Albert E. Dotson, Jr. “Terry’s arrival strengthens Bilzin Sumberg’s capabilities in the affordable housing arena, offering clients a full breadth of development expertise under one roof. As Florida emerges from the pandemic and enters recovery mode, we see affordable housing as being a critical area of focus for our public and private sectors.”
The timing of Lovell’s addition during the early stages of an economic downturn underscores the firm’s counter-cyclical model, which is centered around practices that are adaptable to changing market conditions and which tend to see an uptick in activity when the economy slows down, such as Corporate Finance and Restructuring, Public-Private Partnerships, and Real Estate Finance and Distressed Asset Workouts.
The expansion of the firm’s Affordable Housing practice coincides with the growing demand for affordable housing in Florida. According to the National Low Income Housing Coalition, the state is experiencing a deficit of more than 400,000 affordable rental homes for low-income families. That figure is expected to rise due to the economic downturn brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic.
“I’ve had the pleasure of representing a number of mutual clients side-by-side with Bilzin Sumberg’s real estate development team, and I’ve always admired the firm’s ability to meet complex challenges with sophisticated solutions,” said Terry Lovell. “My decision to join the firm will create immediate benefits for our developer clients tackling Florida’s affordable housing shortage, which remains one of the state’s most pressing needs.”
“Having worked with Terry Lovell and the attorneys at Bilzin Sumberg over the years, I appreciate their understanding of the affordable housing landscape, community relationships, and ability to complete complicated transactions,” added Albert Milo, Jr., Principal and President of Related Urban. “South Florida and the rest of the state are facing a significant affordable housing shortage, and the only way to fill that gap is through responsible development, as we are doing in our developments in partnership with Miami-Dade County such as Liberty Square and River Parc. I know Terry’s expertise with tax credits and financing will add significant value to Bilzin Sumberg’s existing team.”
Lovell earned his Juris Doctorate from the University of Miami and his bachelor’s degree from Southern Utah University.
About Bilzin Sumberg
Bilzin Sumberg works with clients whose business and legal opportunities and challenges span the United States and cross borders to Europe, Latin America, Canada, the Middle East, and Asia. The firm's growth has paralleled that of its Miami home base, a region known for its rich cultural, social, and professional diversity. Bilzin Sumberg lawyers concentrate on services at the heart of both regional and international commerce, including real estate, land development and government relations, environmental, corporate law, joint ventures, domestic and international tax and estate planning, business litigation, finance, and public-private partnerships. For more information, please visit bilzin.com.