Sunday, February 28, 2010

Phila state tower price falls as sale to Blatstein drags

"Two years after Pennsylvania announced the sale of its office building at 1400 Spring Garden St. to developer Bart Blatstein's Tower Investments, the deal still isn't done, and the sale price has gone down.

The sale is now scheduled to close in July, for around $23.4 million, down from the original price of $25.2 million, state Department of General Services spokesman Ed Myslewicz told me. That's because the state took longer than expected to negotiate replacement rental offices at 801 Market St (the old Strawbridge & Clothier store, partly owned by Ron Rubin's Pennsylvania Real Estate Investment Trust) and 801 Race St.

But Blatstein has also faced delays, due to the difficulty of arranging financing, Misewicz added. He's paying the state "up to $40,000 a month" past last November's previous deadline. Blatstein has said he plans apartments - probably rental, maybe condo - and a row of stores.

On Monday, the state will announce the sale of its Pittsburgh office building to a group called River Vue Associates, from Canonsburg, Pa."

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