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Blackstone Group Picks Up Huge Tax Bill with Willis Tower Buy


Blackstone Group paid $11.4M in state and local real estate transfer taxes last month when it completed its record $1.3B purchase of Willis Tower. That amount could have been even larger if Blackstone hadn't claimed $250M in revenue from "personal property." Willis Tower features such as the Skydeck observatory and broadcast antennas atop the 110-story skyscraper were exempt from transfer taxes because they generate revenue separate from the building's 3.8M SF of office space. Real estate attorney Sonny Ginsburg told Crain's that number is an "outlier number" but Willis Tower is unique compared to other office building and therefore the number is justified. [Crain's]