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Champion Adds 108-Unit Westerville Complex to Growing M-F Portfolio

13 Mar 2013, 10:31 pm

By Adrian Maties, Associate Editor

Champion Property Management, a privately-held, fully-integrated, multi-family investment firm, just completed its twelfth apartment community acquisition of 2013. A Champion-sponsored affiliate purchased Caleb’s Creek Apartments, a recently completed 108-unit apartment complex in Westerville. The purchase price has not yet been disclosed.

“Caleb’s Creek will be our fourth apartment complex on the northeast side of Columbus,” noted Michelle Yeager-Thornton, Champion’s co-founder and chief operating officer. “The area surrounding Hamilton Rd. is rapidly growing, and we believe Caleb’s Creek will be another great addition to our multi-family portfolio.”

Champion’s latest acquisition is located close to many retail, dining and entertainment options in Westerville, one of central Ohio’s fastest-growing locations.

Located at Hamilton Road and Warner Road, Caleb’s Creek Apartments opened last year. It offers one- and two-bedroom garden-style apartments as well as corporate housing and short-term leases.

Apartments feature fully-equipped kitchens, nine-foot-high ceilings, full-size washer and dryer connections, patios and balconies. Community amenities also include a swimming pool with sun deck and a 24-hour fitness center. Founded in 2010, Champion now manages 3,000 multi-family units in central Ohio.

Photo: Champion Property Management

Welsh Buys 2 Warehouses in Groveport, Obetz as Part of $100M, 2.7 MSF Deal

28 Feb 2013, 2:11 am

By Adrian Maties, Associate Editor

Minnesota-based Welsh Property Trust has purchased two industrial properties in Groveport and Obetz from KTR Capital Partners as part of a $99.5 million, five-building portfolio. The two warehouses, which total nearly 1.5 million square feet between them, accounted for $47 million of the price tag, reported Columbus Business First.

Located in Groveport, the larger of the facilities is a 754,000-square-foot warehouse on a 42-acre site at 6766 Pontius Road. Honeywell International, the sole tenant, occupies 594,000 square feet. The property features 32-foot clear ceiling heights, 86 dock doors, four drive-in doors and parking for 502 cars and 157 trailers.

Zulily, Inc. leases the entire 737,471-square-foot distribution center at 3051 Creekside Parkway in Obetz. Located on a 37-acre site, the facility includes 32-foot clear ceiling heights, 75 dock doors (expandable to 179), six drive-in doors and parking for 506 cars and 220 trailers.warehouse situated on a 42-acre site.

“This offering represented a rare opportunity for Welsh Property Trust to acquire five debt-free, newer built industrial facilities in one transaction – one that will allow them to complement their existing portfolio and provide an immediate presence in primary distribution markets,” commented John Huguenard, an international director with Jones Lang LaSalle Inc. and co-leader of the team that arranged the deal.

 “The portfolio has been extremely well maintained by committed institutional ownership and requires minimal capital improvement in the near term,” Huguenard added. In addition to the Central Ohio properties, Welsh’s newly acquired 2.7 million-square-foot portfolio includes assets in Chicago, Indianapolis and Cincinnati.

Charts courtesy of CBRE.

Market Uptick Prompts Plans to Build 2 Hotels on Olentangy Rd.

14 Feb 2013, 5:20 pm

By Adrian Maties, Associate Editor

Ohio’s recovering hospitality market is motivating developers to start building new hotels in the Columbus area. According to Columbus Business First, two such projects will start in the near future along Olentangy River Rd.

Sintel Hotel Group Inc. plans to start construction late this year on a 95- to 98-key hotel at 3121 Olentangy River Rd. The $12.5 million, eight-story property will include a two-level parking structure with spaces for 99 vehicles and meeting space that can accommodate up to 75 guests.

Sintel, which owns the nearby Holiday Inn Express at 3045 Olentangy River Rd. plans to unveil the hotel’s flag next month.

Not far from the Sintel project, David Patel, a local hotel investor and operator, plans a May construction start for an $18.5 million Hampton Inn & Suites. Located on a long-vacant site at 3160 Olentangy River Rd., the hotel would include 36 two-room suites, 114 standard guest rooms and meeting space for up to 100 guests. Brackett Builders Inc., the general contractor, is expected to complete construction next year.

The announcements of the new projects coincide with steady improvement in the hospitality market. According to Marcus & Millichap Real Estate Investment Services Inc., occupancy has risen to 56.5 percent.

In other hospitality  news, the AAA auto club has recently awarded its Four Diamond Award to five hotels in Columbus:

  • the Westin Columbus;
  • the Hilton Columbus at Easton;
  • the Renaissance Downtown Columbus;
  • the Hilton Columbus at Polaris;
  • the Embassy Suites Columbus Airport.

Only 14 Ohio hotels have received the AAA Four Diamond rating.

Chart courtesy of Marcus & Millichap Real Estate Investment Services Inc.  

CMA Plans Spring Launch for $38M Final Phase of Renovation

1 Feb 2013, 4:48 pm

 By Adrian Maties, Associate Editor

The Columbus Museum of Art is getting ready to launch the $37.6 million final phase of its Art Matters renovation and expansion project. The institution presented plans for its new wing to the City of Columbus Downtown Commission on Jan. 22 and expects to start two years of construction in late spring.

Plans call for the renovation and expansion of the Ross Wing and the lobby that were added in 1974. The third phase will expand the current 96,000-square-foot complex by 50,000 square feet. On tap are a sculpture garden, restaurant, museum store and entrance. The project’s third phase is designed by the Columbus-based architecture firm DesignGroup. Tod Williams Billie Tsien Architects of New York City developed the master plan.

“This is a defining moment for the Museum,” commented Nannette Maciejunes, CMA’s  executive director. “Moving forward with this project allows us to fulfill our promise to the community of continuing to create great art experiences for everyone. The Museum’s growth is a reflection of our community’s vision for the arts and culture in Columbus and the priority each of our donors places on supporting a thriving arts community.”

According to CMA’s website, it has secured $56 million in pledges through its Art Matters capital endowment campaign toward the project’s estimated $90 million cost.

In the project’s first phase, completed in Sept. 2009, the museum renovated Beaton Hall. Next, CMA’s historic Broad Street building was renovated. Renamed the Elizabeth M. and Richard M. Ross Building, that building reopened Jan. 2011. Both phases were both completed on time and on budget.

Rendering: The Columbus Museum of Art

Team Gemini Advances $300M Process Complex in Grove City

17 Jan 2013, 11:13 pm

By Adrian Maties, Associate Editor

Team Gemini plans to invest at least $312 million in industrial processing and research facilities near the Franklin County Sanitary Landfill in Grove City, Ohio. The Orlando-based sustainable project design and development company signed 99-year leases with the Solid Waste Authority of Central Ohio on Jan. 8 for two parcels totaling 365 acres.

The largest component, the Gemini Synergy Center, will be a $300 million industrial and research park located on 343 acres.  It will include 35 acres of state-of-the-art automated greenhouses, a digester, a fish farm, and process and/or manufacturing facilities powered by green energy produced from waste materials. Colliers International will serve as leasing agent for the park, which will be anchored by Team Gemini.  

On an adjacent 22-acre parcel, Team Gemini will build a $12 million to  $18 million,  85,000 square-foot landfill receiving facility(LRH), which will be owned and operated by the solid waste agency. Team Gemini will also build, own and operate a 100,000 square-foot materials recovery facility, which will be linked to the industrial park by a conveyor belt and pedestrian walkway.  

The landfill receiving facility and the material recovery plant are expected to be completed in two years; Team Gemini is targeting completion for the entire project by 2017.

Photo credits: The Solid Waste Authority of Central Ohio

Fairfield Medical Center Plans $35M Expansion in Lancaster

19 Dec 2012, 11:44 pm

By Adrian Maties, Associate Editor

Fairfield Medical Center will pursue a $35 million renovation and expansion on its main campus at 401 N. Ewing Street in Lancaster. The plan was approved Dec. 12 by the institution’s board of directors. Design will continue through 2013, followed by groundbreaking in 2014 and completion in time for the hospital’s centennial in 2016.

Plans call for an addition that will centralize surgical functions and link the main hospital building to the surgical pavilion. It will improve efficiency and make transporting patients to other sections of the hospital smoother and safer. The addition’s new operating rooms will be sized to accommodate advanced technology and robotic equipment.

Fairfield Medical Center will also add 36 new private rooms. Once the expansion is complete, all the hospital’s rooms will be private. In addition, plans call for renovating existing patient rooms and expanding family waiting areas.

“This plan not only protects our current patient base in an increasingly competitive environment, but also allows for expansion in areas with demonstrated potential for market growth,” said Mina Ubbing, FMC president and CEO, in a news release. “This is an ideal time for FMC to make this investment in our future as interest rates are extremely low and construction prices favorable. The project helps to maintain the value of FMC’s assets, which keeps with our commitment to remain an independent community hospital.”


Image credit: Fairfield Medical Center


Simon/Tanger JV Plans 350 KSF Mall in Delaware County

7 Dec 2012, 4:56 pm

By Adrian Maties, Associate Editor

Simon Property Group Inc. and Tanger Factory Outlet Centers Inc. have formed a 50-50 joint venture to build a 350,000-square-foot upscale outlet center in Delaware County.   The mall will be located immediately southwest of the Interstate 71-Routes 36/37 interchange in Delaware County, about 20 miles north of Downtown Columbus and 11 miles north of Interstate 270. Scheduled to open in time for the 2014 holiday season, the new mall will be branded as Tanger Outlets.

When complete, the center will host about 90 upscale name-brand and designer outlet stores. Simon will develop the site and provide construction supervision while Tanger will be in charge of management services and marketing. The two companies will share leasing duties.

The Delaware County project is one of a series of collaborations between Simon and Tanger, who also announced on Nov. 28 that they plan to open a project of similar size in Charlotte, N.C., before the 2014 holiday season. Most recently, a Tanger Outlets center co-developed by the partners opened last month in Texas City, Texas, on Interstate 45 between Houston and Galveston.

Greater Columbus’ steadily improving job market has boosted household income this year, generating record retail sales and attracting new retailers, according to Marcus & Millichap Real Estate Investment Services Inc. The region’s unemployment rate now hovers between 6 percent and 7 percent.


Chart courtesy of Marcus & Millichap Real Estate Investment Services Inc.

DSW Inc. Buys its HQ in Columbus for $72M

25 Nov 2012, 10:33 pm

By Adrian Maties, Associate Editor

In a $72 million deal, the footwear and accessories retailer DSW Inc. has acquired its corporate headquarters in Columbus. As a result of the transaction, DSW now owns the two-thirds portion of the campus that it had previously leased: its corporate headquarters building, a 700,000-square-foot distribution center and a trailer lot.

The retailer executed the deal by acquiring the property’s previous owner, 810 AC L.L.C., an Ohio-based private company. Third parties will continue to lease portions of the property from DSW.

“Today’s acquisition reflects our continued commitment to growing DSW in the future by opening stores, expanding our DSW.com business and by adding new accounts to our Affiliated Business Group (formerly the Leased Business Division),” remarked Mike MacDonald, DSW’s president & CEO. “Purchasing the property secures our investment and ensures our ability to expand into additional office space to support DSW’s continued growth,” he added.

DSW’s recent capital investments in the property include the installation of a $15 million automatic sortation system at the distribution center, which will support its size replenishment program. Under the terms of the deal, the previous owners will contribute $3 million toward replacing the roof of a building on the campus. Schottenstein Property Group will provide property management services.

DSW expects to benefit from reduced overhead and from revenue provided by leasing space to third-party tenants. At most recent report, the company operated 363 stores in 41 states, Washington, D.C., and Puerto Rico, and plans new store openings around the country.

Photo credit: DSW Inc.







Hilton Debuts $140M Downtown Hotel, Touted as Convention Magnet

16 Nov 2012, 4:37 pm

By Adrian Maties, Associate Editor

The $140 million Hilton Columbus Downtown opened its doors to the public on Oct. 19. Local businesses and city officials are counting on the new property to help the capital city get more competitive in attracting conventions and other events.

Located at 401 North High Street, the 532-key property is connected to the Greater Columbus Convention Center by means of an elevated crosswalk spanning the street. The hotel is also near the North Arts District and the Arena District.

Hilton Columbus Downtown offers 48 guest suites, 31,000 square feet of meeting and banquet space, a French bistro-style restaurant called the Gallerie Bar & Bistro and a Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf. Its lobby opens into a large atrium with skylights that create an atmosphere combining the indoors and outdoors. An art collection showcases some 225 original works by 100-plus artists representing central Ohio. The property is a candidate for LEED and Green Seal Certifications from the U.S. Green Building Council.

“Hilton Columbus Downtown will attract millions of new visitors and make Columbus a best-in-class destination for national conventions and events,” predicted Mayor Michael  Coleman. Franklin County Commissioner President Paula Brooks commented that “having this hotel in our community’s portfolio adds to our vital tourism industry, which already brings in more than $7.2 billion annually to our county and reduces the tax burden of every Franklin County family by an average of $1,900.” According to a Marcus & Millichap report, Ohio’s hotel occupancy is recovering and has risen to 56.5 percent.

“Hilton Columbus Downtown will attract millions of new visitors and make Columbus a best-in-class destination for national conventions and events,” predicted Mayor Michael Coleman. Franklin County Commission president Paula Brooks commented that “having this hotel in our community’s portfolio adds to our vital tourism industry, which already brings in more than $7.2 billion annually to our county and reduces the tax burden of every Franklin County family by an average of $1,900.”

According to a Marcus & Millichap report, Ohio’s hotel occupancy is recovering and has risen to 56.5 percent.”


Charts courtesy of Marcus&Millichap Real Estate Investment Services Inc.
Photo Credit: Hilton Hotels & Resorts


Residents Arrive at Grandview Yard’s First M-F Complex

21 Oct 2012, 2:50 am

By Adrian Maties

Residents have started moving into the Apartment at the Yard complex, the initial multi-family component of the Grandview Yard mixed-use development in Grandview Heights.

Nationwide Realty Investors Ltd., Grandview Yard’s master developer, announced that contractors are wrapping up construction of the first of three four-story buildings. All 46 units of the first building are already fully leased. The second and third buildings are scheduled for completion in early 2013.

“We have delivered our first fully-finished units ahead of schedule, with the remaining units leasing fast.” Nationwide Realty Investors’ President and CEO Brian Ellis commented. He added, “Grandview has proven to be an attractive market for young professionals who love the neighborhood feel and want to be near downtown.”

Apartments at the Yard will consist of three four-story buildings, U-shaped in plan. The apartments will be a mix of one-bedroom and two-bedroom units and townhouses.  Monthly rents will range from $995-$1,255 per month for one-bedroom apartments; from $1,375-$1,855 for two-bedroom units; and from $1,825-$2,095 for town homes. All units will feature private terraces or patios, ceramic tile or wood flooring, stainless steel appliances, walk-in closets, washers and dryers and secured key fob access.Amenities at the community, which will be pet-friendly, will include a swimming pool, hot tub and a grilling area.

Population and employment growth in the Columbus metropolitan area have boosted multi-family fundamentals and prompted developers to start building. Marcus & MIllichap Real Estate Investment Services Inc. expects vacancy to drop to 6 percent this year with average rents reaching $701 per month and effective rents rising to $665 per month.

Grandview Yard encompasses nearly 100 acres on the site of the former Big Bear warehouse.  Nationwide Realty Investors plans between 1.5 million and 2 million square feet of office and retail space and more 600 residential units.

Grandview Yard is also the first project in the Midwest registered for certification for the U.S. Green Building Council’s LEED for Neighborhood Development.

Photo credits: www.grandviewyardapartments.com.

Charts courtesy of Marcus&Millichap.

Miller-Valentine Starts $11.5M Senior Housing Complex

5 Oct 2012, 1:47 am

By Adrian Maties, Associate Editor

The Miller-Valentine Group has kicked off Delaware Place Apartments, an $11.5 million affordable senior housing complex in Delaware.

Located at 351 South Sandusky St. on the site of the former Delaware Hotel, the property will include seven villas totaling 14 units and a four-story elevator building with 49 one-bedroom apartment homes. Scheduled for completion in 2013, the project will be developed on a 7.4-acre site, just west of the Olentangy River in Delaware’s commercial district.

The roots of the project date back to Feb. 2010, when the city purchased the distressed Delaware Hotel for $227,000 using federal Neighborhood Stabilization Fund grants. Later that year, the property was demolished.

Miller-Valentine is developing Delaware Place together in partnership with the Ohio Housing Finance Agency and the Ohio Capital Corporation for Housing as a part of the federally funded, state-managed Low Income Housing Tax Credit program. The project will deliver affordable housing for adults 55 and older with household incomes between 30 percent and 60 percent of region’s median household income.

Funding for the project is provided through KeyBank and federal low-income housing tax credits. It was designed by M&A Architects. Planning and landscape design services were provided by the Edge Group, while Kleingers & Associates provided civil engineering sevices.

The units will feature walk-in closets, Energy Star-rated appliances, garbage disposals, extra storage space, and central air conditioning. Community amenities include a fitness center, theatre room, business center, on-site management and 24-hour emergency maintenance services.

Image courtesy of www.yournextplacetolive.com.


Carter Breaks Ground on $50M Residential/Retail Development Downtown

24 Sep 2012, 3:01 am

By Adrian Maties, Associate Editor

Atlanta-based Carter, one of the largest investment, development and advisory firms in the United States, recently started construction on phase two of a mixed-use project in downtown Columbus. Carter is working on the project together with local equity partners Bob Weiler and Don Kelley.

The project is a 325,000-square-foot redevelopment of the former Columbus City Mall and is projected to cost $50 million. It was recently named HighPoint at Columbus Commons; when finished, it will add 301 residential units and 23,000 square feet of first-floor retail space to downtown Columbus. Located on two acres along South High Street, HighPoint is part of the nine-acre Columbus Commons site.

The homes will be designed with a warm, red-brick traditional style. They will consist of studios, one- and two-bedroom units, as well as 11 two-level townhouses located on the park side of the building. It will offer residents such amenities as a swimming pool, a club room, a workout room and connection to the underground garage now available underneath Columbus Commons. Two restaurants will make up the retail part of the project. They will offer outdoor seating and views of the park and pavilion stage. The project is expected to be completed in December 2013.

Carter acquired the land from Capitol South, the developer of Columbus Commons. Retail leasing will be provided by The Robert Weiler Co., while Village Green will be in charge of residential leasing and property management. Columbus-based Moody Nolan is the project’s architect, with Brasfield & Gorrie as the general contractor. Huntington National Bank is providing the construction loan with participation from Fifth Third and First Commonwealth banks.

The Columbus apartment market is currently strong, with vacancies at a 10-year low. Demand is high due to increased employment and population growth. In addition, the last financial crisis made people more cautious, and most now prefer renting over buying. According to Marcus & Millichap, overall vacancy is expected to decrease even more, to 6 percent this year, while rents will see a 2.9 percent annual increase and reach $701 per month. Effective rents will bump up 3.9 percent to $665 per month.


Charts courtesy of Marcus&Millichap.
Rendering courtesy of Carter.


OSU Signs Off on $396M Plan for North Campus

6 Sep 2012, 9:50 pm

By Adrian Maties, Associate Editor

The Ohio State University Board of Trustees has approved a $396 million plan to transform the North Residential District into a unique neighborhood where students will live and learn, according to The Columbus Dispatch. On August 31, trustees gave OSU officials the green light to start hiring architects, engineers and other consultants. The plan calls for the addition of 3,200 beds in 11 new dormitories and would double the number of beds on north campus to 6,359.

Under the plan, four existing dorms on Lane Ave. and North High Street would be torn down to make way for the new facilities. Eight of the new residence halls would rise between 5 and 7 stories, and the other three would be 12 stories tall. Also on the agenda is construction of two new dining halls and a 35,000-square-foot fitness center amid three existing 12-story residential towers.

OSU will finance the project through a combination of bonds and university reserve funds. The first phase of construction is scheduled to begin by July 2013 and will add 1,600 beds to the north campus upon completion in June 2015. The second phase of construction, which will add another 1,600 beds, will start by July 2014 and be completed by June 2016.

OSU officials maintain that the project will increase the number of beds, add new dining, recreation and support facilities, and generally enhance the student experience. It is tied to a new policy that requires students to live on campus through their sophomore years.

“We know that students who live in the residence halls for two years have significantly higher second-year retention and graduation rates than those who have never lived on campus,” commented Ohio State President E. Gordon Gee. “We are creating another exceptional living environment, complementing work already underway in the South Residential District, incorporating the elements of student success, programmatic needs, architectural innovation, and student and faculty interaction.”

Image courtesy of www.facebook.com/osu.

MSC Industrial Plans $55M Facility Near Bolton Field

16 Aug 2012, 4:09 pm

By Adrian Maties, Associate Editor

 MSC Industrial Direct plans to build a 400,000-square-foot distribution center on a 70-acre parcel north of Bolton Field, on Columbus’ West Side. The facility will be Melville, N.Y.-based MSC’s fifth in the U.S., and will help support the company’s growth strategy and maintain its signature service model. 

 A late 2012 construction start is scheduled for the $55 million facility. MSC has obtained $9 million in tax breaks and other incentives from a variety of sources, including Columbus 2020, the city of Columbus, the state of Ohio, JobsOhio, Franklin County, the Columbus-Franklin County Finance Authority, and Columbia Gas.  MSC expects to create about 300 new full-time jobs in Columbus over the next five years.

  ”After conducting a thorough review, Columbus provided the most compelling opportunity to expand our distribution network in the most cost-effective manner, in a region that fits well with our existing network and provides easy access to key markets and resources, as well as a rich pool of local talent,” said Doug Jones, MSC’s executive vice president for global supply chain operations. Jones added that he expects the investment to generate high long-term returns.

The company expects to complete construction and begin operation in late summer or early fall of 2014. MSC’s new distribution center will also be designed to accommodate future expansion.

Charts courtesy of CBRE.

OSU Awards $98M Science Building Contract to Gilbane

1 Aug 2012, 9:44 pm

By Adrian Maties, Associate Editor

Gilbane Inc., has secured the construction management contract for a $98 million chemical and biomolecular and engineering building on the Ohio State University campus in Columbus. The CM at-risk contract is the first awarded under a year-old Oho statue designed to offer public agencies alternative delivery methods that are faster, more flexible, less expensive and less risky.

 Scheduled for completion in Sept. 2014, the 235,000-square-foot building will be located in Academic Core North in the heart of the campus’ science and engineering district. It will contain research wet labs with ancillary support spaces, computational research spaces, shared core laboratories, instructional spaces as well as offices for faculty, administration and graduate students. Stantec and Pelli Clarke Pelli serve as the project’s architects. The official groundbreaking took place on June 18, 2012.

Larry Mastella, vice president and district manager for Gilbane, commented, “Gilbane’s experience with complex lab facilities and our already strong working relationship with OSU made us a good fit for this exciting opportunity.” He added, ”A significant pre-construction effort is already underway to make sure we will be able to achieve at least LEED Silver on the facility.”

Rendering courtesy of The Ohio State University.