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Liberty Acquires 2 Tempe Industrial Buildings as Part of $1.5B National Deal

19 Oct 2013, 7:51 pm

By Amalia Otet, Associate Editor

Liberty Property Trust has acquired two buildings in Tempe as part of a national 177-asset industrial deal that adds about 23 million square feet to its industrial portfolio.

Malvern, Pa.–based Liberty bought the operating partnership of Cabot Industrial Value Fund III for $1.5 billion. Approximately 58% of the total portfolio is located in existing Liberty industrial markets, including Chicago, south Florida, Houston, New Jersey, Maryland, Arizona and central Pennsylvania. Ten million square feet of the portfolio are located in 10 markets where Liberty did not previously have a presence, including Atlanta, Dallas-Fort Worth and Southern California.

Located at 1858 East Encanto Drive and 475 West Vaughn St., the two Tempe properties add 149,271 square feet of space to the company’s local portfolio. Liberty owns and manages approximately 3 million square feet of industrial space in Scottsdale, Phoenix, Tempe, Goodyear and Tolleson. Those holdings include Liberty Logistics Center, Liberty Cotton Center, Liberty 303 Business Park, Liberty Tolleson Center, Liberty Sky Harbor Center. Also in the REIT’s Arizona portfolio is the office building at 8501 East Raintree Drive, which has earned LEED Gold and Energy Star certification.

According to John DiVall, Liberty’s senior vice president and city manager, Tempe is a strategic location for tenants and one of the strongest areas for growth in metropolitan Phoenix. “This acquisition is very exciting to us because it allows us to expand out footprint in Tempe and further our relationship with the City,” he said in a statement.

In 2012, Tempe tapped Liberty as the master developer for a 100-acre site located at Priest Road and Rio Salado Parkway. The planned 1 million-square-foot project, Liberty Center at Rio Salado, will integrate office, flex, industrial, and retail components and will be designed to meet LEED certification standards.

Investor interest in the industrial market remains strong Valley-wide, with total vacancy levels, excluding Flex properties, at 12 percent, according to Jones Lang LaSalle Inc.

The development pipeline remains active with 5.2 million square feet currently under construction. The Southwest Region is second only Southern California for both speculative and build-to-suit development. One major project was delivered in the third quarter of 2013, a 1.2 million-square-foot distribution building at 5501 SE Lower Buckeye Ave. which is fully occupied by TJX.

Charts courtesy of Jones Lang LaSalle Inc.

Sentinel Buys Luxury M-F in Scottsdale for $58M; Fountain Hills Plaza Commands $21M

11 Oct 2013, 2:44 pm

By Amalia Otet, Associate Editor

In a $57.8 million deal, New York City-based Sentinel Real Estate Corp. purchased The Paragon at Kierland, a 276-unit, Class A luxury apartment complex located on the Westin Kierland Golf Course in Scottsdale, from Sunstone Realty Advisors of Vancouver, Canada. The sales price equates to $209,239 per unit or $200 a square foot.

According to Colliers International, which structured the deal, the transaction is the highest per unit sale to date in 2013 and the highest per unit sale in the last five years for properties without an active condo map in the Phoenix market. More than 65 investors bid on the property and 22 investors placed bids at more than $50 million, Colliers reported.

Colliers’ team of Jerry Tenge, senior vice president of multifamily investments; and Tristan Charlesworth, an associate; exclusively represented Sunstone.

Located at 15608 N. 71st Street, The Paragon sits on a 10.4-acre pad within walking distance of 30 restaurants and more than 100 specialty shops at Kierland Commons and Scottsdale Quarter.

The complex was built in 2000 and underwent extensive renovations in 2008. Consisting of 289,233 rentable square feet in 23 three-story buildings, along with a single-story recreation building, the property features one-, two- and three-bedroom apartment homes ranging in size from 924 square feet to 1,323 square feet. Community amenities include a lagoon-style pool with a whirlpool spa, fire pit and cabanas, a fitness center, and lush landscaping. Occupancy was 98 percent at the time of closing.

In retail investment news, Whitestone REIT acquired Fountain Hills Plaza, a Class A neighborhood retail center in Fountain Hills, for $20.5 million. Located at 16605 Palisades Blvd., the 111,289-square-foot center is jointly anchored by grocery and hardware stores. It serves Fountain Hills, an affluent master-planned community of 10,000 households.

According to James C. Mastandrea, Whitestone’s chairman and CEO, the transaction reflects the Houston-based-REIT’s strategy of picking up off-market properties with significant value-add potential. Included in the deal was an adjacent one-acre development-ready pad site that could accommodate an additional 7,000 square feet of multi-tenant retail space.The center and adjacent parcel were acquired for a combined price of $185 per leasable built square foot.

Whitestone’s holdings in metropolitan Phoenix encompass 20 community centers totaling 1.6 million square feet, plus four land parcels that are available for future development. The REIT’s other recent acquisitions include Mercado at Scottsdale Ranch, The Pinnacle of Scottsdale, The Shops at Pinnacle Peak, Terravita Marketplace, Village Square at Dana Park, and Anthem Marketplace.

The Paragon at Kierland rendering via Official Website

Fountain Hills Plaza photo courtesy of Business Wire

DMB Sells Tempe’s Centerpoint on Mill for $38M; Wood Partners to Build Luxury M-F Complex in Scottsdale

4 Oct 2013, 6:51 pm

By Amalia Otet, Associate Editor

In a $38.4 million deal, Scottsdale-based DMB, Inc. sold Centerpoint on Mill, a 127,027 square-foot mixed-use property in the downtown Tempe, to Mill Avenue Retail L.L.C. of Scottsdale.

Glenn Smigiel, Bob Young, Steve Brabant and Rick Abraham with(photo here) CBRE Group Inc.’s Phoenix office negotiated the sale on behalf of DMB. Mill Avenue Retail L.L.C. represented itself.

The upscale office-retail development is located on a 22-acre tract at the northwest corner of Mill Avenue and University Drive, near Arizona State University, the Mill Avenue District and METRO light rail station.

Overall, Centerpoint on Mill was 87% leased at closing and its office space was 100% leased. AMC Theatres, Lincoln Strategy Group and One Energy will soon join a tenant roster that includes Churchill’s Fine Cigars, Devil’s Diner, Fat Tuesday, and Five Guys. Parking rights to approximately 720 parking spaces were also included in the deal.

Launched in partnership with the City of Tempe almost three decades ago, Centerpoint on Mill was DMB’s first large-scale mixed use development. Over the years, the property served as a catalyst for new development, attracting businesses, entertainment, national office and retail users to Mill Avenue.

Tempe is currently one of metropolitan Phoenix’s strongest submarkets, with a 5.1 percent Class A office vacancy rate, well below the metro average of 18 percent, according to CBRE.

In multi-family development news, Wood Partners plans to break ground in December on Alta Scottsdale, a $38 million, 218-unit luxury apartment project.

Designed by Dallas-based Womack+Hampton Architects L.L.C., the 190,000-square-foot rental community will be situated on a 6.5 acre pad one mile from downtown Scottsdale. The development will consist of two four-story Italianate buildings offering 140 one-bedroom units, 76 two-bedroom units and two three-bedroom apartments. Units will feature granite countertops, stainless steel appliances, vinyl plank flooring and many locally sourced materials. Community amenities will include a club room and bar area, a fitness center and a Frank Lloyd Wright-inspired pool area.

Completion is set for summer 2015. Pre-leasing is expected to start in November 2014, with rents about 30 percent lower than typical high-end apartments in the local market. Wood Partners will serve as its own general contractor.


Photo credits: Centerpoint on Mill official website

Cole Acquires $56M Office Portfolio; Walton Street, Everest Holdings Pay $24M for Tempe Office Building

27 Sep 2013, 5:05 pm

By Amalia Otet, Associate Editor

In a $23.5 million deal, a joint venture of Chicago-based Walton Street Capital L.L.C. and Scottsdale-based Everest Holdings has acquired Elliot Corporate Center, a 223,392-square-foot Class B office building in Tempe.

Jim Fijan and Will Mast of CBRE Group Inc.’s Phoenix office represented the seller, a tenants-in-common group sponsored by Thompson National Properties L.L.C. of Costa Mesa.

“This transaction is another example of the continued demand for office investment properties in the southeast Valley,” said Fijan in a statement. “Savvy investors recognize the continued strengthening of the market and well-located, well-taken-care of assets, like Elliot Corporate Center, are going to be well received.”

Located at 875 E. Elliot Road, the two-story, Class B office asset was 87% leased at the time of the sale. The University of Phoenix is the anchor tenant, occupying 162,069 square feet. Lamson Business College occupies another 32,400 square feet. Built in 1998, Elliot Corporate Center offers a wide range of amenities as well as access to Interstate 10 at Elliot Road.

In other office acquisition news, Business Real Estate Weekly of Arizona reported that an affiliate of Cole Real Estate Investments acquired three properties totaling  304,637 square feet in Phoenix and Tempe for $56.3 million, equivalent to $185 per square foot on average. The seller was LBA Realty in Irvine, California.

The assets are the 122,646-square-foot DeVry Building at 2149 W. Dunlap Ave., which serves as DeVry University’s Phoenix campus and traded for $23 million; Cotton Center II, a 99,734-square-foot back-office building located in the Cotton Center Business Park at 4121 E. Cotton Center Blvd., Phoenix ($18.9 million); and the 82.257-square-foot Rio Salado Corporate Center (pictured at right). Located at 1415 W. 3rd Street in Tempe, the property sold for $14.4 million, according to BREW.

Photo credit: LBA Realty

Gelt Buys Tempe M-F Complex for $15M; IHG Opens Holiday Inn Express in Scottsdale

20 Sep 2013, 9:21 pm

By Amalia Otet, Associate Editor

In a $15 million deal, Gelt Inc., has purchased Versante Apartments, a 240-unit multi-family complex in Tempe. The Tarzana, Calif.-based company made the value-add transaction with Prudential Real Estate Investors.

Located at 1330 W. Broadway Road, the 184,752-square-foot property was built in 1971 and is 94 percent occupied. It features one- and two-bedroom units averaging 770 square feet in size. Community amenities include two pools, a fitness center, basketball court, clubhouse and barbecue and picnic areas.

“This sale is representative of a recent trend with older properties,” said Jim Crews of Cushman & Wakefield  Inc., who marketed the property and procured the buyer. “Investors seeking excellent returns and better locations are able to purchase great infill properties such as Versante. After a few modest interior improvements, this asset will provide residents and Gelt with an appealing apartment building in an outstanding location.”

In hospitality news, InterContinental Hotels Group announced the grand opening of its Holiday Inn Express Hotel & Suites Phoenix North/Scottsdale, a four-story, 104-key hotel in Scottsdale.

The new addition to IHG’s portfolio in the Phoenix metro is located at 4575 E. Irma Lane in Scottsdale’s Desert Ridge area. The 60,000-square-foot property is also near the Wild Fire Golf Course, the Musical Instrument Museum as well as several corporate headquarters. Guest rooms feature contemporary styling, 32-inch high-definition TVs, refrigerators and microwave ovens. Hotel amenities include a swimming pool, a meeting room that can accommodate up 32 attendees, a 24-hour fitness center, complimentary high-speed Internet access and a business center.

Photo credit: Gelt Inc.

Plaza Cos. Plans Fall Start for SkySong’s 3rd Office Building

30 Aug 2013, 8:29 pm

By Amalia Otet, Associate Editor

Plaza Cos. plans to break ground this fall on the third office building at SkySong-The ASU Scottsdale Innovation Center. To be located at 1475 North Scottsdale Road, near the 42-acre mixed-use development’s signature shade structure (pictured at right), the $32 million, 145,000-square-foot building will be a candidate for LEED certification.

Arizona State University will occupy one and a half floors of the four-story structure, and WebFilings will be expanding its presence by leasing a full floor in SkySong III. Plaza itself will take space on the first floor.

Plaza is SkySong’s master developer, in partnership with the Arizona State University Foundation and the city of Scottsdale. Holualoa Cos. of Tucson has recently partnered with Plaza on the project, according to the company. Alliance Bank of Arizona is providing financing for SkySong III, Butler Design is the architect and DPR will serve as general contractor.

At full build-out, the SkySong development will contain 1.2 million square feet of office, research and retail space. Additionally, plans call for a hotel/conference center as well as a $44 million residential project that would include 325 apartment units. The first 83 residential units are scheduled to open in October.

The development’s first two buildings, totaling 300,000 square feet of office space, are almost fully occupied. SkySong III is is already 65 percent leased and pre-leasing continues on SkySong IV which is fully permitted and “shovel-ready”, according to the developers.

“SkySong was built to create a unique location for companies with a focus on innovation and technology, and the project has succeeded in becoming a hub for forward-thinking entrepreneurship,” said Don Couvillion, vice president of real estate for the Arizona State University Foundation.

SkySong is currently home to more than 1,000 employees and 50 companies. Completion of SkySong III and IV and the apartments would bring the development to almost 900,000 square feet.

Photo credits: ASU SkySong

Inland American Pays $103M for Student Housing Project in Tempe

24 Aug 2013, 7:28 pm

By Amalia Otet, Associate Editor

In a $103 million deal, Inland American Communities Group Inc. has acquired Hub on Campus, a 640-bed student housing community near Arizona State University in Tempe, from Core Campus L.L.C., the property’s developer.

Brad Goff, a principal of Apartment Realty Advisors who worked on the transaction, told the Phoenix Business Journal that Core Campus will reap significant proceeds from the sale of the $42.6 million project.

Inland American Communities, an affiliate of Inland American Real Estate Trust Inc., is re-branding the 19-story property University House. Additionally, the project includes 21,842 square feet of ground-floor retail space and adjacent land for future development.

Located on a high-traffic corridor at the north end of campus, across the street from Sun Devil Stadium and near the Mill Avenue entertainment district, University House will provide residents with access to ASU’s Tempe and downtown Phoenix campuses.

Units feature custom furniture, flat-screen TVs, stainless steel appliances, in-unit washesr and dryers,  private patios and balconies.

Common amenities include two resort-style pools, a clubroom with gaming systems, an indoor/outdoor fitness center, a 22-foot LED outdoor TV screen, a yoga and steam room, a tanning salon, outdoor grilling stations as well as indoor/outdoor study areas and conference rooms.

Renderings courtesy of Hub On Campus

Grand Canyon U. Picks DMB Site in Mesa for New Campus

11 Aug 2013, 12:37 am

By Amalia Otet, Associate Editor

Grand Canyon University will locate its second East Valley campus at Eastmark, a 3,200-acre master-planned community being developed by DMB Associates in Mesa. GCU will purchase 100 acres, with an option to buy 60 additional acres.

“In selecting the Eastmark site, we were especially impressed with the integrated community concept DMB is creating,” said Brian Mueller, the university’s president and CEO. “This environment will give our students, faculty and staff an exciting place to learn, work and play while being an integral part of the East Valley community.”

To be located east of Ellsworth and Point 22 Boulevard, the campus will have immediate access to a future phase of the 1.5-mile long, 106-acre Eastmark Great Park. At full build-out, the campus will include offices, administrative space, classrooms, laboratories, library, a student union, dormitories, recreational fields and parking. Construction is slated to begin in 2014, with an opening date set for 2015.

The university plans to start offering post-secondary classes in the fall of 2014 and is on the lookout for temporary leased space in the Mesa area. Students would then transfer to the new campus when it opens a year later.

Currently under construction, Eastmark will eventually feature single-family homes, multi-family communities, education facilities, retail and entertainment destinations.

Grand Canyon University’s campus in Phoenix is home to nearly 6,500 students and has expanded to include seven residence halls, a 55,000-square-foot recreation center, classrooms, laboratories, and a 5,000-seat arena.

Rendering/map credits: Eastmark

Allred Starts Office Building No. 6 at Chandler Mixed-Use Development

8 Aug 2013, 3:34 pm

by Amalia Otet, Associate Editor

Douglas Allred Co. has broken ground on the sixth speculative office building at Allred Park Place, its master-planned mixed-use development in Chandler.

San Diego-based Allred expects completion of the 100,622-square-foot, two-story building by July 2014. Located at 1255-1450 S. Spectrum Blvd. within the Price Road Corridor, Allred Park Place is a large-scale, 143-acre office, retail and hospitality development.

Upon completion of the current project, Allred Park Place will offer approximately 500,000 square feet of Class A office space. It has direct access to the Loops 101 and 202, offering ready access from most locations in the Valley, including Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport.

Infusionsoft relocated its headquarters to a 92,109-square-foot office building at Allred Park Place in early 2013, joining such tenants as Education Management Corporation, Healthways, International Rectifier and League for Innovation in the Community College.

Future plans call for the construction of an office campus exceeding 2 million square feet along with hotel and retail facilities.

Mark Krison, Brad Anderson and Bryan Taute of CBRE Group Inc.’s Phoenix office will handle leasing for the building. Phoenix-based Balmer Architectural Group is the project architect and Willmeng Construction of Mesa is the contractor.

Photo credit: Douglas Allred Company

Nationwide Readies Fall Kickoff for 230-Acre Mixed-Use Project in Gilbert

28 Jul 2013, 7:27 pm

By Amalia Otet, Associate Editor

Nationwide Realty Investors Ltd. plans to kick off construction this fall of one of the biggest mixed-use projects in the Gilbert area, a 230-acre development at Gilbert Rd. and the Loop 202 freeway.

At full buildout, the project, which will be dubbed Rivulon, will include 3.1 million square feet of Class A office space, 500,000 square feet of retail, a luxury apartment complex and a 250-key hotel. Natural gathering places will be integrated throughout the property.

Site preparation is under way for the project’s first phase, which will include a 120,000-square-foot, four-story Class A commercial office building and a 45,000-square-foot LA Fitness location.

Located eight miles southeast of Phoenix, Gilbert is one of the fastest-growing communities in the United States, drawing about 1,000 new residents every month. Construction of the LA Fitness location is scheduled to start by the end of the year, and the first office building is expected to open in the fall of 2014, reported AZRE.

In transaction news, Los Angeles-based BH Properties L.L.C. has purchased Vista Ventana, a 275-unit multi-family community in Phoenix, from El Camino Vista, L.L.C. for $10.2 million.

Located on an 8.7-acre site at 3221 West El Camino Drive, the complex offers studio, one- and two- bedroom homes ranging in size from 400 square feet to 900 square feet. El Camino Vista completed a major overhaul of the property, including interior upgrades, exterior painting and a roof renovation, while raising occupancy to 90 percent.

“This well-maintained asset is a solid, long term type hold for us,” said Steve Jaffe, executive vice president of BH Properties. “We continue to view the Arizona B and C class apartments market as full of opportunity despite the recent uptick in pricing.”

BH Properties plans to add two more apartment complexes to its Phoenix portfolio by the end of 2013.

Rendering of the Rivulon project courtesy of Nationwide Realty Investors

Residential Housing Wraps 900-Bed Student Project In Tempe

21 Jul 2013, 4:06 am

By Amalia Otet, Associate Editor

Residential Housing Development L.L.C. is completing construction of The District on Apache, a multifamily complex that will serve Arizona State University in Tempe.

Located at 977 E Apache Blvd., the 279-unit, 900-bed property offers one-, two-, three- and four-bedroom units with energy-efficient appliances and lighting, granite countertops, nine-foot ceilings, designer furniture, full-size washer and dryers, high-definition TVs and private patios, the East Valley Tribune reported.

Amenities include an oasis pool, a lazy river pool with large tanning shelves, private cabanas, an over-sized spa, outdoor barbecue kitchen, a virtual golf course, and an outdoor movie theater. Additionally, The District on Apache will feature ground floor retail and structured parking. Asset Campus Housing is the property manager.

An improving employment picture and rising incomes will boost demand for apartments in the Valley this year, according to projections by Marcus & Millichap Real Estate Investment Services Inc. Nearly 3,300 units are in the pipeline in Tempe, Chandler and Gilbert.

Vacancy has dropped 60 basis points to 6.8 percent over the past four quarters; vacancy rates vary from 5.9 percent for properties built after 1990 to 8 percent for 1970s-vintage assets. Average effective rents are expected to rise 2.9 percent in 2013 to $775 per month. In 2012, rents increased 2 percent.

Photo credits: thedistrictonapache.com

Alliance Residential Grabs High-End Chandler M-F Asset for $37.5M

14 Jul 2013, 11:53 pm

By Amalia Otet, Associate Editor

In a $37.5 million deal, Phoenix-based Alliance Residential Co. has acquired Villa Pallavicini, a 290-unit high-end rental apartment community located about two miles north of Chandler’s Price Corridor. The sales price equates to $129,310 per unit.

The seller, Gardner Real Estate Co., was represented by Steve Gebing and Cliff David, both vice presidents in Marcus & Millichap Real Estate Investment Services Inc.’s Phoenix office. The deal reflects the continuing appeal to investors of Price Corridor, the high-tech and financial services hub located less than two miles south of the property.

Developed by Gardner in 2005,  Villa Pallavicini has a design inspired by the Palazzo Pallavicini Rospigliosi in Rome. The 16.9 acre-property boasts such distinctive features as grape vineyards, open-air fountains and cobblestone pathways with overhead trellises.

Located at 635 South Ellis St., Villa Pallavicini offers one-, two-, and three-bedroom units with fully equipped kitchens and breakfast bars, nine-foot ceilings, rounded archways, garden tubs and full-sized washers and dryers.

Community amenities include two resort-style swimming pools and spas, a stand-alone fitness center, bocce ball court, gated entry, garage parking, a clubhouse with a pizza oven and wine cellar, and state-of-the-art audiovisual and wireless communications.

Among companies with offices in Price Corridor are Intel, eBay, PayPal, Orbital Sciences, Amkor Technology, Isagenix, Freescale Semiconductor, Microchip Technology, Motorola, Bank of America, Wells Fargo, Toyota Financial Services and AmeriCredit.

Photo credits: Villa Pallavicini official website

OnTrac Moves HQ to Chandler; Whitestone REIT Grabs Phoenix Community Center for $23M

8 Jul 2013, 12:38 am

By Amalia Otet, Associate Editor

OnTrac plans to move its corporate headquarters from Phoenix to Chandler to accommodate its need for room to grow. The package delivery service will occupy 65,000 square feet of office space at 2501 S. Price Road in the Price Corridor beginning Oct. 1.

“We’ve begun construction and will spend in excess of $5 million on the relocation of our corporate headquarters,” said Rob Humphrey, president of the 23-year old company. OnTrac’s new facility is expected to bring about 850 new jobs to the area over the course of an 11-year lease. OnTrac serves California and the major metropolitan areas of seven other western states: Arizona, Colorado, Idaho, Nevada, Oregon, Utah and Washington.

The Price Corridor is home to major employers in aerospace, life sciences, technology and advanced business services.

In retail transaction news, Whitestone REIT has completed the off-market purchase of Anthem Marketplace, an 113,293-square-foot Class A community center in Phoenix. The $23.3 million deal includes an adjacent land pad that permits the addition of 15,000 square feet of leasable space.

Located at Anthem Parkway and Gavilan Peak Parkway, the center serves the Anthem and Tramonto master-planned communities in North Phoenix. It has direct access to I-17.

Anthem Marketplace is anchored by Safeway and features a diverse tenant base of restaurants, establishments, personal care services and retailers. Its in-place net operating income is approximately $1.8 million, or 8% of the purchase price, according to Whitestone.

The Houston-based REIT now owns 15 community centers in greater Phoenix totaling 1.5 million square feet of gross leasable area. Recent acquisitions include Mercado at Scottsdale Ranch, an 118,730- square-foot property in central Scottsdale; The Shops at Pecos Ranch, a 78,767-square-foot, fully leased community center in Chandler; Fountain Square, a 118,209 square foot property in Phoenix; and Village Square at Dana Park, a 310,979-square-foot center in Mesa.


Photo credits: Whitestone REIT via Business Wire

Terminix Inks Westgate’s Biggest Office Lease; Griffin Pays $54.5M for Deer Valley Office Complex

29 Jun 2013, 12:27 am

By Amalia Otet, Associate Editor

Terminix plans to expand its  operations to Arizona and open a new customer care center at Westgate Entertainment District in Glendale.

In a deal touted as the largest office lease in the property’s history, the Memphis, Tenn.-based pest-control company will occupy the entire 32,800 -square-foot second floor of the east building beginning Oct. 1. The new facility will bring a total of 300 new jobs to the area.

“This lease is a validation of the market’s response to the nearly $1 million in investments iStar has made in upgrades to the property over the past year,” said Jeff Teetsel, Westgate’s development manager.

Located at 6770 North Sunrise Blvd., Westgate is anchored by Jobing.com Arena, home of the Phoenix Coyotes. Other tenants include Buffalo Wild Wings, Whiskey Rose Bar & Grill, Chipotle, Gallery Glendale and the Arizona Republic, which relocated its West Valley office earlier this year according to AZ Business Magazine.

In transaction news, an affiliate of Los Angeles-based Griffin Capital Corp. has acquired a 232,600 square-foot, Class A, two building office complex in Phoenix in a $54.5 million deal.  Located north of Downtown Phoenix in the Deer Valley submarket, the two-building asset is triple-net leased to a tenant described by Griffin Capital as a Fortune 500 global healthcare services company.

The seller, an unidentified institutional investor, was represented by Chris Toci, Chad Littell, Tim Whittemore of Cushman & Wakefield Inc.’s Phoenix office, as well as Robert Elms and Ben Cooper, New York City-based members of Cushman & Wakefield’s corporate finance and investment banking team.

The  deal marks the second local acquisition by Griffin Capital Essential Asset REIT Inc.; last month, it purchased a 231,400-square-foot, Class A, flex R&D facility in Chandler for approximately $32.5 million.

Photo Credits: Westgate Office

JDM Partners Buys State Farm’s Tempe Operations Center for $73M

10 Jun 2013, 4:10 am

By Amalia Otet, Associate Editor

In a $73 million deal, an affiliate of Phoenix-based JDM Partners L.L.C. has acquired State Farm Mutual Automobile Insurance Co.’s operations center in Tempe.

Built in 1999, the 372,408-square-foot complex sits on a 21-acre tract at 2700-2925 S. Sunland Drive and 2980 S. Priest Drive, within the master-planned Fountainhead Corporate Park in Tempe. The property consists of four Class A office buildings, one inspection and storage facility, along with two above-grade parking structures.

It has convenient access to the regional freeway network, Sky Harbor International Airport, downtown Tempe, Arizona State University and a wide variety of nearby amenities. Barry Gabel, Mindy Korth and Chris Marchildon of CBRE Group Inc.’s Phoenix office represented the seller. The five-building corporate campus is completely occupied by State Farm Insurance.

In other transaction news, San Diego-based Pathfinder Partners, L.L.C. has expanded its Phoenix footprint with the $16.4 million acquisition of Copper Creek, a 21-building community in Tempe, from Equity Residential.

Developed in 1984, the 144-unit property features one- and two-bedroom apartments and townhomes ranging from 711 to 1263 square feet. Common amenities include two pools, a spa, clubhouse, fitness center, barbecue grills and picnic area.

Pathfinder plans to give the property a $1.6 million makeover. Highlights will include a new clubhouse/gym, landscaping, a dog park and new exterior paint. Some units will get new flooring, cabinetry, countertops, finishes, fixtures, appliances and fresh paint. Additionally, Pathfinder will rename the property and install new signage.

Other recent Pathfinder acquisitions in the Phoenix area include:

- Academy Apartments, a 96-unit, four-building community near the city’s central business district
- Dorsey Place, 84 units in a 90-unit new condominium project in Tempe, in partnership with San Diego-based Stratford Partners
- Dobson Springs Apartments, a 120-unit complex in Mesa, an REO acquisition in partnership with Arizona- and British Columbia-based Bruckal Properties and its affiliate New Summit Partners
-Barolo Place, a high-end townhome project at 10757 North 74th St. in Scottsdale. Pathfinder acquired the remaining 16 units in the 65-unit community. (Pathfinder)

Photo: Fountainhead Corporate Park

Ryan Cos., Sunbelt Holdings Team for $600M Tempe Project; DMB Opens Mesa Master-Planned Community

3 Jun 2013, 2:08 pm

By Amalia Otet, Associate Editor

Ryan Companies US, Inc., and Sunbelt Holdings have joined forces for what would be the biggest office development deal in Arizona history. The team is eyeing a $600 million transit-oriented project adjacent to Tempe Town Lake in Tempe.

Provided the City Council approves the plan, Ryan and Sunbelt would build 1.9 million square feet of office space on a 20-acre tract owned by Arizona State University north of Sun Devil Stadium. Designed by Tempe-based architectural firm DAVIS, the project would include a five-building campus anchored by State Farm, a 10-acre lakeside plaza, plus an additional 40,000 to 60,000 square feet of retail amenities.

In other development news, DMB marked the grand opening of its master-planned community in Mesa, approximately 30 miles southeast of Downtown Phoenix.Dubbed Eastmark, the project will feature a mix of uses including employment, tourism, residential, retail and entertainment, according to the developers.

The 3,200-acre property is located at the southeast corner of Elliot and Ellsworth Roads. The first residential phase of more than 700 single-family homes is located just north of Ray Road between the northwestern corner of Ray and Signal Butte roads.

The community will ultimately offer a variety of housing options ranging from apartments and multi-family residences to custom homes and home sites.

DMB has selected seven local and national builders for the first phase’s residential neighborhoods,
including Standard Pacific, Woodside and Meritage Homes which have models under active construction along the Cambium Court park. Home prices range between the low $200,000s to more than $400,000.

Amenities will include the 1.5-mile long, 106-acre Eastmark Great Park, modeled after some of the great urban parks of the world; richly landscaped, tree-lined streets and parkways; a riparian habitat; and the Mark, a community center that would serve as Eastmark’s social hub.

Renderings: Eastmark /Standard Pacific

DPR’s Phoenix Office Wins Landmark Certifications; IIT Pays $77M for Mesa Complex

25 May 2013, 10:36 pm

By Amalia Otet, Associate Editor, and Paul Rosta, Senior Editor

In a milestone for sustainability and adaptive reuse, an office building developed by DPR Construction has earned recognition as the largest net-zero energy building certified to date by the International Future Living Institute.

DPR, which served as the project’s developer and contractor, earned the certification by transforming a 1970s-era retail boutique into its new 16,333-square-foot Phoenix Regional Office (pictured at right and below).

Located at the corner of 44th Street and Van Buren in Phoenix’s Discovery Triangle, DPR’s project is only the second in the United States, and the largest in the world, to earn IFLI’s net-zero certification.

The designation signals that a building produces at least as much energy as it consumes. In addition, the project received LEED Platinum certification from the U.S. Green Building Council. In a statement, DPR regional manager Dave Elrod cited the project as evidence that “net-zero is possible, even in one of the most extreme climates in the country.”

The project team, which also included SmithGroupJJR and consultant DNV KEMA Energy and Sustainability, achieved net-zero certification by incorporating a variety of green features into the 40-year old building.

Highlights include 87 operable windows using data from the energy monitoring system to open and close in response to indoor and outdoor temperatures; an 87-foot-tall, zinc-clad solar chimney, which creates a convection current to discharge hot air and draw in cool air; 82 tubular lighting devices provided by Solatube International Inc. that nearly eliminate the need for artificial daytime lighting; and a “vampire” shut-off switch to thwart electrical devices that draw energy when the building is unoccupied.(ILFI)

In transaction news, Lincoln Property Co. completed the sale of Broadway 101 Commerce Park, an 808,419-square-foot industrial property in Mesa. Industrial Income Trust (IIT) acquired the property in a $77 million, all-cash deal. Cassidy Turley represented IIT.

Built in two phases in 2005 and 2007, the high profile industrial complex at 2140-2360 E. Broadway Road includes five warehouses, three general industrial and three flex buildings.

Photo credits: DPR Construction

PrivatePortfolio Group Pays $68M for Scottsdale M-F Complex; $40M Student Housing Project Nears Completion in Tempe

21 May 2013, 6:35 pm

By Amalia Otet, Associate Editor

In a $68.3 million deal, PrivatePortfolio Group LLC of Seattle has acquired Crown Court Apartments, a 416-unit multi-family property in Scottsdale.

Tyler Anderson, Sean Cunningham and Asher Gunter of CBRE Group Inc.’s Phoenix office represented the seller and structured the transaction. The property was 95 percent occupied at the time of closing.

Completed in 1987, Crown Court Apartments is located at 7900 E. Princess Drive, adjacent to the Scottsdale Fairmont Princess Resort and the TPC Scottsdale golf course. Upscale shopping and dining destinations are nearby. Each unit is equipped with fully-appointed kitchens, full-size washers and dryers, and walk-in closets. The community offers two resort-style swimming pools, a designer clubhouse, 24-hour fitness center, a media/theater room and lighted sports courts.

In other commercial news, AZRE Magazine reports that the Hub on Campus, a $40 million student housing complex and one of the largest projects under development in Arizona, is on track for delivery in August. Beal Derkenne Construction is building the 19-story complex (pictured at right) near the Arizona State University campus at 323 E. Veterans Way in Tempe.

The property will house more than 600 residents on 17 residential floors. Additionally, the building will feature 25,000 square feet of retail space and 6,550 square feet of restaurants.

Amenities will include indoor and outdoor study areas and conference rooms, a resort-style pool, private cabana areas with TVs, an LED outdoor video wall, a volleyball court and a state-of-the-art fitness center. The Hub on Campus will be a candidate for LEED Silver certification.

Rendering of the Hub on Campus courtesy of Core Campus

Crescent to Build Scottsdale Quarter’s First M-F Project

11 May 2013, 5:28 pm

By Amalia Otet, Associate Editor

Glimcher Realty Trust and Crescent Communities, a Charlotte, N.C.-based real estate investment, development and operating company, announced plans May 7 to team up on a 275-unit luxury apartment community in Scottsdale.

The property will be the first residential component of Scottsdale Quarter, the 28-acre mixed-use development located on the southeast corner of Scottsdale Road and Greenway-Hayden Loop. All told, Scottsdale Quarter comprises 370,000 square feet of retail, restaurant and entertainment space and 203,000 square feet of office space.

Crescent Communities will develop the residential project along Greenway-Hayden Road on Scottsdale Quarter’s Northeast corner. The property will offer modern décor and such upscale amenities as an elevated resort-style pool and a two-story fitness center with views of McDowell Mountains. Construction is expected to begin in late 2013.

In other multi-family news, Redstone at SanTan Village, the first luxury multi-family project to open in Gilbert in five years (pictured at right), has started signing leases.

Located at 1925 S. Coronado Road, the $45 million project incorporates resort-style features including granite countertops, stainless steel appliances, walk-in closets, attached and detached private garages, and high-speed internet connections.

Other amenities at the 382-unit community include a 24-hour fitness center with club-quality equipment, an elevated spa area with a fireplace and flat-screen televisions, poolside cabanas, outdoor lounge areas, free Wi-Fi and a children’s playground area.

Del Mar, California-based LWI Properties is the developer of the project, which was built by hardison/downey construction inc. and managed by Mark-Taylor Residential. Financing was provided by Union Bank.

Photo: Mark-Taylor Residential

Bascom Group Pays $35M for Downtown Chandler M-F Asset

29 Apr 2013, 4:27 pm

By Amalia Otet, Associate Editor

An affiliate of Irvine, Calif.-based Bascom Group L.L.C. has completed the $35.2 million acquisition of The Fairways, a 352-unit Class A apartment community located in Downtown Chandler.

Cliff David and Steve Gebing of Marcus & Millichap Real Estate Investment Services Inc. represented the seller; Bascom Group was self-represented. Gary Mozer and Katie Rodd of George Smith Partners, along with Brian Eisendrath and Brandon Smith from CBRE Inc., arranged the equity and financing for the purchase. MEB Management Services will serve as the onsite property manager, according to RENTV.com.

Located on a 20-acre site, the asset comprises one-, two- and three-bedroom units averaging 965 square feet in size and featuring electric kitchens, nine-foot-high ceilings, full-sized washers and dryers, walk-in closets and private patios or balconies. Select units offer wood-burning fireplaces, vaulted ceilings, separate storage spaces, tuck-under carports, direct-access garages and lightly upgraded interior finishes.

In other suburban Phoenix multi-family news, thePhoenix Business Journal reports that San Diego-based OliverMcMillan plans to break ground later this year on a $50 million luxury apartment community along Tempe Town Lake.

Dubbed The Lofts at Hayden Ferry, the development will be located east of Mill Avenue on Rio Salado Parkway at Tempe Town Lake. Plans call for a four-story, 264-unit property offering a variety of floor plans plus two levels of underground parking.

Image courtesy of Google maps

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