New & Noteworthy
By: Julie D. Stern
KBS Capital Markets Group
KBS Real Estate Investment Trust II (KBS), a public, non-traded REIT based in Newport Beach, California, has sold the 300 North LaSalle building in downtown Chicago. The purchaser, fellow Newport Beach firm The Irvine Co., paid $850 million, or approximately $652 per square foot. Built in 2009 by Houston-based Hines, the 60-story trophy office tower sits on the north bank of the Chicago River and offers tenants extensive amenities, including an acclaimed steakhouse. The transaction is the largest single-building office sale in the city’s history and the third largest in the U.S. so far this year (after the sales of Five Times Square and the Time Warner Center, both in New York, for $1.5 billion and $1.31 billion, respectively).
The Lake Erie waterfront in Cleveland could be seeing new life. The city council has approved plans for a $700 million mixed-use project on a more than 20-acre site. The three-phase project planned by Trammell Crow Co. and Cumberland Development would involve construction of 80,000 square feet of office space, 40,000 square feet of retail and restaurant space and more than 1,000 apartments. However, funding has yet to be secured.
East Market, a new mixed-use project on a 4.3-acre, full city block site in Center City Philadelphia got underway recently. An existing structure has been demolished and construction will begin this fall on the first $230 million, 650,000-square-foot phase, which will include a 17-story tower, the renovation of an existing building, and 150,000 square feet of spec office space as well as 322 apartments and 160,000 square feet of retail space. At buildout, the project, which is being developed by National Real Estate Advisors, will cost an estimated $500 million and feature 2 million square feet of space as well as approximately 9,600 square feet of digital and static signage, a first for the city.
Chris J. Cross
A 1949 building where the Western Electric Telephone Co. once produced handsets for rotary telephones has been reborn as a state-of-the-art lab and research facility. Renovated by Wexford Science & Technology at a cost of $73 million, the 183,000-square-foot, LEED Platinum-certified @4240 building is located in St. Louis’ Cortex Innovation Community. Building tenants include Washington University’s Office of Technology Management, several of the university’s medical school offices and the first Cambridge Innovation Center to be located outside of the Boston area. The 200-acre midtown industrial district is being transformed by five educational, research and health care institutions into a vibrant, 24/7 mixed-use neighborhood designed as a regional epicenter of innovation and entrepreneurship.
DDOE & Anacostia Watershed Society
2 million sq. ft.
The District of Columbia now has more than 2 million square feet of green roofs installed on more than 200 buildings, thanks in large part to innovative programs led by the District Department of the Environment (DDOE), private companies and several nonprofit groups. Green roofs help new development projects and additions over 5,000 square feet meet a requirement to manage the first 1.2 inches of rainfall; DDOE also provides a reduced stormwater fee for buildings with green roofs and a green roof rebate program (RiverSmart Rooftops) administered by the Anacostia Watershed Society that offers developers $7 to $15 per square foot to voluntarily install new green roofs.
An electric car-sharing service known as BlueIndy launched in Indianapolis this summer with 500 cars and 1,000 charging stations at 200 locations. The Bolloré Group, which already runs similar programs in France, including Paris’ Autolib service, is investing $35 million in the project to provide the cars and infrastructure. Indianapolis Power & Light is spending $16 million to install the charging stations.