Exclusive: Shorenstein Plans for Center Plaza
Shorenstein Properties—which recently paid $307M for 1-3 Center Plaza from Equity Office—will use expiring leases covering one-third of the 717k SF complex as impetus for significant capital improvements and rebranding, managing director Matt Knisely tells us.
Boston is a key market for Shorenstein, says Matt (snapped at his cool office on Manhattan's Third Avenue—which was in disguise as the Old West for this pic). But finding more properties here isn't easy. While a decade ago, Center Plaza seemed a bit off the main drag, today it’s in the heart of a vibrant market and within steps of all the major T-lines. Cushman & Wakefield’s Rob Griffin and Ed Maher were the brokers on the deal. By summer, Matt expects work to be underway on at least $20M of renovations to the exterior entrance and signage; and interior lobbies, common corridors, and elevator cabs.
The Government Center property adds a third major asset to the San Fran-based firm’s Boston portfolio. Shorenstein purchased it on behalf of its 10th fund, Shorenstein Realty Investors Ten, and has taken out a $207M mortgage from HSBC. (Suddenly the $60 debt we racked up on Words With Friends hints seems downright responsible.) In ’12, Shorenstein purchased 451 D St in the Seaport from Beal and Rockpoint and in ’07 acquired 399 Boylston St. This is another in a string of Boston-area sales by EOP, which still owns 60 State St, 100 Summer St, 500 Boylston, and 125 and 150 Cambridgepark Dr.
An affiliate of Fairfield Residential paid $24M for the 133-unit Baker Chocolate Factory Apartments in Dorchester Lower Mills to an affiliate of Beacon Communities. CBRE/NE’s Simon Butler and Biria St. John repped the seller and found the buyer. The three attached mill buildings were originally built in the late 1800s as the HQ for the Baker Chocolate Company. In the 1980s, they were converted to residences. In ‘08, Beacon acquired them and renovated.
Grander Capital Partners paid $15.9M to Campanelli for 300 Crown Colony, a 118k SF, Class-A office building in Quincy. In ’09, Campanelli purchased the property for $8.9M and then renovated it. Cushman & Wakefield’s Rob Griffin and Edward Maher repped the seller and the buyer. Tenants include law firm Murphy, Hesse, Toomey & Lehane, Cambridge Savings Bank, and Massachusetts Eye & Ear.
Taymil Partners paid The Mt Vernon Co $15.7M for the 194-unit The Landings and East Shore Apartments in East Providence, RI. Boston Realty Advisors’ Christopher Sower and Jason Weissman repped Mt Vernon.
Calare Properties paid $12.2M for the former Sysco Boston Warehouse, 380 S Worcester St in Norton. The new owner also snagged a 180k SF lease from Preferred Freezer for the 476k Sf warehouse/distribution center.
CONSTRUCTION & DEVELOPMENT
Gov Deval Patrick kicked off the official groundbreaking for the $150M, 250k SF lab/office Forest City is putting up for Takeda Pharmaceuticals’ Millennium unit in Cambridge's Central Square. After completion in two years, the building just outside University Park will provide space for oncology research, drug discovery and cell culture.
Wellesley College is planning to spend $365M to $450M to overhaul several of its buildings on campus over the next decade. New revenue and spending cuts will fund the upgrades. Major improvements haven’t been made to 82% of its buildings in 25 years, and 60% in 50 years.
Simpson Housing has completed construction on the $140M Victor, a 286-unit luxury apartment building designed by ADD Inc and Copley Wolff Design Group. It has 17k SF of retail, 4,000 SF leased to Tavern in the Square.
Madison Place manager Robert Moss secured a $14.8M seven-year, fixed-rate loan through Boston Private Bank & Trust to pay off the original construction financing on the recently completed 96-unit Madison Place in Shrewsbury. HFF’ Riaz Cassum, Porter Terry, and Martha Henderson led the team that arranged the financing.
Advanstar leased 14k SF at 70 Blanchard Rd in Burlington from landlord E & F Realty Associates, which was repped by Avison Young ‘s Jack Kerrigan, Mark Coelho and Bill Sullivan. At the same building, Gullotti Insurance signed for 2,100 SF, repped by Carbone Commercial Real Estate’s Ed Carbone.