In less than a month, tenants are going to be moving into apartments with one of the best front yards in Memphis.

The first building of Arlington Properties’ Velo at Shelby Farms is almost complete, meaning tenants will soon be crossing Raleigh LaGrange Road to enjoy Shelby Farms’ 40 miles of trails, forests, and wide-open spaces.

“It’s like being in the country while being in the city,” said Marc Holcombe, the community manager for Arlington Properties.
With Velo located directly across from the park’s 100-acre off-leash dog park, Holcombe said about 40% of the 48 people who have been approved to live at Velo are pet owners. Holcombe, who will be living at the 270-unit complex, said he’s also happy to be located a mile from the every-chain-imaginable retail corridor of Germantown Parkway.

With quartz countertops, walk-in double showers, and a pool with cabanas, Holcombe said Velo will offer a “whole new apartment living experience” to the area. The apartments contain between 720 square feet and 1,320 square feet and are currently renting for between $1,170 and $1,800 per month — ranging from $1.30 per square foot to $1.90.

The $38 million Velo project was the third major development to be announced next to Shelby Farms from 2017-2019 — following the $142 million Dwell at Shelby Farms and $375 million Parkside at Shelby Farms — but will have tenants far before the other two. After the first building opens June 1, Holcombe said he expects a new building to open about every three weeks, with all 12 open by the end of October.

The project broke ground in January 2020 and was only briefly delayed by COVID-19. Though, like on so many projects, procuring materials like countertops and cabinets has become more difficult recently.

Velo was almost killed in early 2018, when the City of Memphis let developers know it had reached sewage capacity in the 35-square-mile Fletcher Creek drainage basin.
“The deal died. It really did. We dropped the contract and moved on to other work,” Arlington Properties EVP David Ellis said in 2019.

However, when Ellis was told of a new tax break by the Economic Development Growth Engine (EDGE) for Memphis & Shelby County for projects hurt by the capacity issue, he was happy to pick the project back up.

The complex’s name is derived from the French word for bicycle — vélo. It’s clubhouse includes a room full of 30 bike racks.