Wednesday, February 3, 2016

Ellis Preserve Newtown Square office portfolio hitting the market

by Natlie Kostelni, Staff writer for the Philadelphia Business Journal

In what could be one of the biggest real estate deals of the year, Equus Capital Partners Ltd. is seeking to sell off the office portion of Ellis Preserve in Newtown Square, Pa.

Ellis Preserve is a mixed-use development on 218 acres at Route 252 and Route 3 and is considered one of the more unique pieces of commercial real estate in the region.

Just the office segment of the development is being put up for sale and that involves 13 buildings totaling 596,000 square feet of space on roughly 40 acres, according to sources. The space is fully occupied more than two dozen tenants such as Sunoco Co., PetPlan and Main Line Health.

Why Equus would look to sell the office portion of Ellis Preserve couldn’t be determined. The private real estate firm has developed the entire property with a local partner. A contact at the Philadelphia company couldn’t be reached for immediate contact. It also couldn’t be immediately determined how much the portfolio might sell for.

Equus has sold other properties at Ellis Preserve in the past.

In 2005, it unloaded a 130,000-square-foot building that was fully leased to Main Line Health for a record-setting $388 a square foot. Though that was a big transaction, it shouldn’t be used as a direct comparison since it’s a single-tenant building leased on a long term basis. If anything, however, the appetite for fully leased office properties in campus-like settings where amenities are plentiful are appealing to investors.

There have been some large portfolio sales recently in the suburban office market.
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