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Contrarion Buyer Richland Cos Picks Up West Houston Property

The Richland Cos purchased Lakes on Eldridge Centre, its first foray into the northwest submarket. It seems like a strange time to buy around the Energy Corridor, but CEO Edna Meyer-Nelson tells us that's part of why she did it.

CREW Houston 2015 Networking award winners:
Patriot Bank's Rhonda Sands, BKD's Kristin Morgan, Richland Cos' Edna Meyer-Nelson, Transwestern's Jan Sparks, Veritas Title's Angie Steadman

Edna says she's always believed that when everyone else is running from a market, that's when she should run toward it. The West Houston area has always been on her radar (it's a rapid-growth market with a higher barrier to entry, particularly for retail) and Edna believes it'll rebound well. Richland will hold the asset for several years, and Edna believes the submarket will be stronger when it's ready to divest of the 30k SF property. Besides, she says there's still demand from all the nearby homes for retail, and the surrounding population is expected to grow 9% in the next five years.

Pictured: Edna won the 2015 CREW networking story of the year for her acquisition of 550 Post Oak Blvd, a 54k SF office building that now houses Richland's HQ. She's center here with Patriot Bank SVP Rhonda Sands, BKD's Kristin Morgan (award presenter), Transwestern managing director Jan Sparks, and Veritas Title's Angie Steadman; the four CREW members were involved in the deal.

Lakes on Eldridge Centre in Houston's Energy Corridor

Here's Lakes on Eldridge Centre, which is at the southeast corner of North Eldridge Parkway and Tanner Road. It's 95% occupied. Edna says Richland is gearing up for rapid growth over the next five years and wanted to start 2016 with a bang. She's targeting 10 acquisitions and two dispositions this year alone across its Southwestern US markets. Richland owns 14 properties in Houston totaling 1.8M SF.