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SpringHill Suites Denver Downtown Becomes First LEED Gold Certified Hotel in Denver

5 Jun 2014, 12:58 am

By Gabriel Circiog, Associate Editor

The SpringHill Suites Denver Downtown at MSU Denver recently announced it has received LEED Gold certification for New Construction from the U.S. Green Building Council.

The $45 million SpringHill Suites Denver Downtown hotel is owned by the Metropolitan State University of Denver and managed by Sage Hospitality. The hotel has become the first metro Denver hotel to receive LEED Gold certification and the second in the SpringHill Suites by Marriott brand portfolio.

The 150-suite hotel opened, alongside the 28,000-square-foot state-of-the-art Hotel and Hospitality Learning Center, in 2012. The public-private partnership between MSU Denver and Sage Hospitality created a dynamic environment for education and on-the-job training for students. The learning center is the first of its kind in the Rocky Mountain region and one of only 11 in the whole country.

“Sage Hospitality is dedicated to operating eco-friendly hotels, so we are extremely proud to receive Denver’s first LEED® Gold certification,” says Walter Isenberg, president & CEO of Sage Hospitality. “This property gives both business and leisure guests an amazing green lodging option in the heart of downtown Denver and we are using it as a model of sustainability for all future development projects.”

The hotel and learning center earned a total of 62 LEED points and their green features include: the use of high efficiency plumbing fixtures and low VOC paints and flooring; secure bicycle storage with lockers and changing rooms to encourage employees and students to use alternative transportation. Close to 20 percent of the building was constructed using recycled materials and more than 78 percent of material waste from the construction was recycled. Ninety percent of regularly occupied areas offer natural day lighting.

The downtown Denver hotel also features numerous amenities including a market, a fitness center, complimentary area shuttle service and complimentary hot breakfast. The SpringHill Suites Denver Downtown also offers 5,000 square feet of meeting and event space.

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Image Courtesy of: www.springhillsuitesdenver.com

City Office REIT Inc. to Acquire 197,000-Square-Foot Plaza 25 in Denver

28 May 2014, 10:01 pm

By Gabriel Circiog, Associate Editor

City Office REIT Inc. recently announced it has entered into an agreement to acquire Plaza 25 in Denver for a purchase price of $25.1 million. As major conditions to the acquisition have been satisfied, the transaction is expected to close in early June 2014.

Located in the Greenwood Plaza submarket of Denver, Plaza 25 is an office park featuring two three-story office buildings and one four-story office building. The combined structures offer 197,000 rentable square feet.

“We believe Plaza 25 represents an ideal first acquisition for City Office REIT. It is located in Greenwood Village, one of Denver’s top submarkets with proximity to executive housing, a strong educated employee base and an abundance of transportation networks including a light-rail station,” says James Farrar, CEO of City Office REIT.

Built in 1981, Plaza 25 was completely renovated in 2006. The property is flanked by the city’s Southeast Light Rail line and is within walking distance of the Arapahoe Station. Plaza 25 is currently 93 percent occupied and, based on the purchase price, is expected to generate an initial full-year cash net operating income yield of around 8.1 percent.

“The property is situated with Interstate 25 frontage and benefits from Greenwood Village’s numerous amenities,” Farrar says. “With its below market in-place rents and stable tenant base, we believe that Plaza 25 will continue to benefit from Denver’s strengthening leasing conditions and deliver our investors increasing cash flow. City Office REIT continues to review a strong pipeline of acquisition opportunities within our target markets and we remain focused on growing our portfolio and enhancing stockholder value.”

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Logo Courtesy of: www.cityofficereit.com

Brookfield Office Properties Inc. Sells 50 Percent Stake in Denver’s Tallest Building to MetLife

21 May 2014, 10:16 pm

By Gabriel Circiog, Associate Editor

Brookfield Office Properties Inc. recently announced it has sold a 50 percent stake in the Republic Plaza office building and entered into a 50/50 joint venture partnership with MetLife on the office tower in a transaction valuing the property at $480 million. Net proceeds to Brookfield are around $98 million. Brookfield will retain management and leasing responsibilities at the property.

“Brookfield looks forward to its continued ownership and operation of Republic Plaza and our newly formed joint venture with MetLife,” says Mark Brown, global chief investment officer of Brookfield Office Properties. “Our investments in the thriving Denver central business district continue to perform extremely well.”

At 56 stories in height, Republic Plaza is the tallest building in Denver. Built in 1984 and designed by Skidmore, Owings & Merrill, the skyscraper features 1,279,000 square feet of office space, 48,000 square feet of retail space and 511 parking spaces. The building is currently 95.2 percent leased with a weighted average remaining lease term of six years in place. The two largest tenants in the building located at 370 17th Street in Denver are Encana Gas & Oil and DCP Midstream. The two companies occupy just under 50 percent of the tower’s office space, with leases that expire only in 2019 and 2023, respectively.

“Republic Plaza is a trophy office tower in a core real estate market,” says Robert Merck, senior managing director and global head of real estate for MetLife. “Brookfield is an experienced and successful owner and operator of office properties and we are looking forward to expanding our partnership with them.”

Brookfield also owns and operates Denver’s second tallest building, 1801 California Street. The company recently completed a $50 million renovation program of the tower which included a new entrance plaza, interior lobby and restaurant.

Photo Courtesy of: www.brookfieldofficeproperties.com

United Properties Acquires 24 Acres and Expands EBC Development in Stapleton

14 May 2014, 3:20 pm

By Gabriel Circiog, Associate Editor

United Properties recently announced that it will expand its industrial development Enterprise Business Center. The Minneapolis-based developer and investor has acquired an additional 24 acres east of its EBC development from Forest City Stapleton Inc., the master developer for the redevelopment of Stapleton.

“We’ve had a tremendous amount of activity at EBC, which spurred our acquisition of additional land for more industrial development,” says Kevin Kelley, vice president, United Properties.

Situated near the southwest corner of Interstate 70 and Havana Street in Denver, the second phase of the EBC development is planned to feature a 467,000-square-foot bulk cross-dock industrial building.

The first phase of the Class A industrial development is currently under construction and upon completion will feature four buildings with 700,000 square feet of space. Around 600,000 square feet of that space is already leased or is pending final lease.

United Properties broke ground on the first two buildings in 2013 and Swire Coca-Cola USA has taken up all 257,000 square feet of one industrial building. Approximately 55 percent of the other 231,000-square-foot building is leased to Tire Rack and United Properties is in final negotiations with another tenant for 50,000 square feet of the remaining space. Tire Rack and Swire Coca-Cola USA are scheduled to move into the first two building in the summer of 2014.

United Properties recently started construction on the second set of industrial buildings at EBC, featuring a total of 100,000 square feet each. Two leases have been signed and one tenant will occupy an entire building while the other building is 44 percent pre-leased. The two tenants will move into the two new buildings in November 2014.

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Photo Courtesy of: www.uproperties.com

Griffis Residential Acquires 288-unit Apartment Community in Aurora for $40.8 Million

7 May 2014, 8:47 pm

By Gabriel Circiog, Associate Editor

Denver-based Griffis Residential recently announced the acquisition of the City Lights apartments. Located in Aurora, Colo. near the Fitzsimons Medical Campus, the Class-A community features 288 units and was purchased for $40.8 million.

The City Lights transaction was completed in a joint venture with PCCP LLC, becoming the fifth transaction for the partnership.

The City Lights acquisition is the second of the year for the company, taking the total tally of Class-A multifamily units that Griffis Residential owns and manages to 5,718. In January the company acquired The Wellington apartments, a 332-unit community in Las Vegas.

“City Lights apartments presents a compelling opportunity to apply our time-tested multifamily property investment strategy,” says Griffis Residential CEO David Birnbaum. “We see a bright future for City Lights due to its proximity to the strong labor market within the Fitzsimons Medical Campus and easy access to DIA and downtown Denver via the expanding public transit system adjacent to the property. Bolstered by a waiting list at City Lights for premium apartment units, we also have a ripe opportunity to implement our targeted capital improvement program, which is one of the cornerstones of our overall investment strategy.”

The company also announced that the newly acquired property will be renamed Griffis Fitzsimons South. Built in 2008, the community is located adjacent to the future 2nd and Abilene Street light rail station and just 2.5 miles from the Fitzsimons Medical Campus. The garden-style property offers six floor plans from one- to three-bedrooms, ranging in size from 637 to 1,439 square feet. Griffis Fitzsimons South features numerous high-end amenities including direct access garages and car ports, a clubhouse, fitness center, business center, heated pool and spas and a conference room.

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Photo Courtesy of: www.griffisfitzsimonssouth.com

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