Monday, February 17, 2020

Weingarten Realty Investors Takes Focused Approach toward Acquisitions (Video)

Seven Lease Deals Totaling 90,000 SF Signed at Equus Capital Properties in PA

by John Jordan
Equus Capital Partners of Newtown Square, PA has secured seven new lease deals at its 440 and 460 East Swedesford Road office buildings here that totaled 90,137 square feet of space

There were four new lease deals and three renewals. The largest transactions were renewals by Genex totaling 50,037 square feet at 440 East Swedesford Road and Tekni-Lex’s 17,219-square-foot renewal at 460 Swedesford Place. The Provident Bank also signed a lease renewal for its 3,350-square-foot operations at 460 Swedesford Road.

Western & Southern Life Insurance Company (4,545, square feet), Kelley Jasons McGowan Spinelli Hanna & Reber, LLP (4,172 square feet), FRS Capital Management (3,947 square feet) and Transparent Health Marketplace (6,867 square feet) all signed new office deals at 460 East Swedesford Road.
Equus Capital Partners, which acquired the two, Class A office buildings in early 2018 from Liberty Property Trust, repositioned the assets and invested significant capital on renovations to both interior and exterior features, as well as the enhancement of amenity spaces and building systems.

“Credit to Equus for taking two outdated buildings in a premier location and turning them into two of the top office properties in the East Swedesford Road corridor. A new grand, three-story glass entrance with exposed stairs and glass railings was constructed at both properties and all new finishes in the lobbies, restrooms and corridors were added, plus a Fooda concept for on-site dining. With these improvements, existing and new tenants saw the value at 440 and 460 East Swedesford Road.”

The two buildings, totaling 149,450 sq. ft. of office space, are located in Tredyffrin Township with no earned income or business privilege taxes. Additionally, the properties are in proximity to the King of Prussia Town Center and the King of Prussia Mall and offer access to Routes 202, 252, 422, Interstate 76 and the Pennsylvania Turnpike.
Earlier this month,  an affiliate of Equus Capital Partners, Ltd. acquired The Reserve at Bridford, a 232-unit garden-style multi-family community located in Greensboro, NC. The acquisition was made on behalf of Equus Investment Partnership XI, L.P. (“Fund XI”), a fully discretionary $382-million value-add equity fund managed by Equus. Madison Apartment Group, L.P., the multi-family operating arm of Equus, will manage the community.

Thursday, February 13, 2020

PREIT Inks 150,000 SF of Leases at Redeveloped Properties

by John Jordan
Locally-based PREIT reports it has signed more than 150,000 square feet of new leases at four of its redeveloped shopping centers.

A total of more than a dozen tenants will open in the next six months at its Woodland Mall, Willow Grove Park, Plymouth Meeting and Valley Mall properties.
“In an ever-evolving retail environment, our redevelopments continue to attract a unique tenant mix geared toward current consumer preferences that both refresh our properties and improve our portfolio,” says Joseph F. Coradino, CEO of PREIT. “PREIT has been at the forefront of shaping the consumer experience, recently completing several high-impact redevelopments that are expected to fuel growth and create value within the portfolio demonstrated by the continuous addition of high-quality, diverse tenants.”

This year, Sephora, White House|Black Market, Windsor Fashion, Champs Sports and Aeropostale will open at the Woodland Mall in Grand Rapids, MI. Specialty grab-and-go options, Auntie Anne’s and Jamba will also open this spring. The new tenants will bring 20,000 square feet of new retail and dining at the mall.

Woodland Mall opened its expansion wing in October 2019, which resulted in double-digit traffic growth over the recent holiday season.

At the Willow Grove Park Mall located north of Philadelphia, the newly-added Yard House will be joined by new dining and snack options including &Pizza, Häagen-Dazs, and Dunkin’, as well as Studio Movie Grille, which will open this spring. LUSH will also join the tenant roster, further strengthening the property’s retail line-up that includes one of two Bloomingdale’s and Primark locations in the Philadelphia metro.

In first half of 2020 at the Plymouth Meeting Mall in Plymouth Meeting, PA, Sola Salon Studios, Ideal Image and Restore Hyper Wellness and Cryotherapy will complete the open-air plaza connecting the newly-added anchors, DICK’s Sporting Goods and Burlington to the lifestyle wing anchored by Whole Foods.
In Hagerstown, MD, the Valley Mall will welcome Dick’s Sporting Goods this spring, replacing the former Sears space and completing PREIT’s anchor repositioning initiative at the property. Dick’s Sporting Goods will occupy 59,000 square feet and complement the property’s other new and diverse anchor tenants: Onelife Fitness, Belk and Tilt. Regal Cinema will complete its full-scale renovation this year as well, PREIT reports.

Wednesday, February 12, 2020

REIT News (Video)

2020 Nareit Chair Describes the REIT Industry as “Healthy” REIT Market Minute - February 2020 Physicians Realty Trust Looking to Medical Office Buildings to Fuel Future Growth

American College of Radiology Inks Deal at Two Liberty Place

by John Jordan
The American College of Radiology has signed a lease for more than 10,000 square feet of space at the Two Liberty Place office tower here.

The American College of Radiology is scheduled to relocate operations this month from its offices at 1818 Market St. to the 28th floor of the 57-story Center City property.

“ACR has roughly 150 employees in the Philadelphia region, many of whom work remotely. This relocation provides the client with the opportunity to shed excess space and enhance the way the office operates. The group will leverage the consolidated, open-concept floorplate and move to a flexible hoteling solution with reservation-based unassigned seating. The efficient footprint allows ACR to significantly reduce annual overhead costs over the course of the lease.”
The relocation and shift in office format will allow ACR to reduce its Philadelphia real estate by a third, Savills states.

The space will be built out and designed to suit the organization’s specific needs. Utilizing a more efficient layout, the new hoteling concept will accommodate approximately 50 employees.

Charles Apgar, executive vice president, ACR, says, “After being in the last location for 15 years, we now have a workplace strategy that aligns with the ACR’s culture and positioning, as well as an engaging environment for our employees and guests.”
ACR, which is headquartered in Reston, VA, is a membership organization of approximately 40,000 radiologists, radiation oncologists and medical physicists dedicated to serving patients and society by empowering radiology professionals to advance the practice, science and professions of radiological care.

Friday, February 7, 2020

Kuwaiti group buys Axalta building in South Philly’s Navy Yard for $61.2 million

by Jacob Adelman Philadelphia Inquirer
A Kuwaiti investment firm has acquired Axalta Coating System LLC’s office and research building at the Navy Yard for $61.2 million.

Dimah Capital Investment Co. bought the 175,000-square-foot property through its U.S.-based Apex Capital Investments Corp. subsidiary. The seller was Liberty Property Trust.

The 1050 Constitution Ave. property was built for Center City-based Axalta in 2017. Axalta’s lease at the property runs until fall 2037.

Liberty built the project as the main developer of the Navy Yard’s central business campus before shifting its focus to industrial projects in 2018.

It sold the Axalta property shortly before its acquisition by San Francisco-based warehouse giant Prologis Inc. closed this week. It was announced in October.

The building is the latest in the region to be acquired by a Kuwait-based fund following the Centre Square office complex’s sale to a group involving Wafra Inc., and Soor Capital’s purchase of four Malvern buildings leased to Vanguard Group.

Apex is managed by Philadelphia-based John Gaghan, a former vice president with real estate firm Lowe Enterprises.

Full story:

Thursday, February 6, 2020

Rent is a Function of Sales | Commercial Real Estate Tips (Video)

Cross Roads Plaza Shopping Center Trades for $25M

by John Jordan
Cyprus-based Medipower Public Co. Ltd. has acquired the 99,650-square-foot Cross Roads Plaza shopping center here in a deal valued at $25 million.

The seller was a partnership between Madison International Realty and SITE Centers Corp.
Ron Stern, CEO of Medipower Public Co., said, “We believe that Crossroads Plaza, anchored by the region’s leading grocer, which is further supported by traffic-driving outparcels Wells Fargo and Wawa, is the ideal combination of location, strong demographics and attractive fit to our business model.”

Cross Roads Plaza is anchored by a 70,818-square-foot ShopRite, which makes-up 71% of the property’s gross leasing area and 58% of the gross income. The grocer’s lease term runs through 2024.

ShopRite expanded by more than 10,000 square feet in 2013 into its current footprint. ShopRite combines with outparcels occupied by Wawa and a bank to compromise 81% of the GLA and 74% of the property’s gross income, creating a stable and secure cash flow. The property is further supported by a premier shadow anchor in Lowe’s Home Improvement.

Approximately 20 miles from Philadelphia, the property maintains highly visibility along Route 38, counting more than 40,000 vehicles per day. Situated in Lumberton, Cross Roads Plaza is near Virtua Memorial Hospital, one of Burlington County’s largest employers, and adjacent to a dense aggregation of industrial employers.

“We have had tremendous success with stable, high-performing grocery-anchored product like Cross Roads Plaza within the Philadelphia MSA. With growing capital formation and continued cap rate compression within the vertical, the market is sure to remain strong.”

The deal for Cross Roads Plaza follows up Medipower’s $40-million purchase last month of Centre Square Commons, an 88,598-square-foot grocery anchored shopping center located in Blue Bell, PA, an affluent suburb of Philadelphia.

The center is anchored by Aldi in its latest prototype of 22,450 square feet. In addition to Aldi, the property is occupied by a strong mix of regional and national tenants including Pennsylvania Fine Wine & Spirits, Starbucks, Zoe’s and Anthony’s Coal Fire Pizza.

Wednesday, February 5, 2020

Penwood-Metrix JV Lands Nearly $17M for Speculative Industrial Project in NJ

by John Jordan
The development team of Penwood Real Estate Investment Management, LLC and Metrix Real Estate Services LLC has secured $16.76 million in construction financing for its 340,000-square-foot speculative warehouse-distribution project here.

Penwood Real Estate, which is headquartered in West Hartford, CT, and Princeton, NJ-based Metrix Real Estate secured a three-year construction loan with two one-year extension options through Wells Fargo Bank for the project at 10 Princess Road. The transaction was arranged by JLL Capital Markets, which worked on behalf of the borrowers in the deal.
The Class A industrial building is under construction on a 31-acre land site at 10 Princess Road in Lawrence Township within a business park situated to the northeast of Trenton and to the southwest of Princeton.

The cross-dock industrial building will feature 40-foot clear heights, 2,000 square feet of office space, 103 dock-high loading positions, 69 trailer parking stalls and four drive-in doors. The expected completion date for the project is June 2020.

The property is immediately off the four-way interchange of I-295 and Princeton Pike and offers prominent frontage on I-295. The location is proximate to and equidistant between both the ports of New York and New Jersey and the Port of Philadelphia, each located approximately 50 miles away.

Last September, Penwood Real Estate Investment Management, LLC, through its fifth value-added investment vehicle, Penwood Select Industrial Partners V, L.P., along with its development partner Metrix Real Estate Services, LLC, acquired an approximate 20.5-acre site in Hamilton, NJ.

The partnership plans to raze the existing inline shopping center and build a 171,250-square foot warehouse/distribution building at the site.

Tuesday, February 4, 2020

Philly Poised for Office Boom Not Seen Since Early ’90s

What a Good IRR Looks Like in Real Estate Investing (Video)

Ghost Kitchens Coming to a Mall Near You

by Linda Moss Costar News
Retail developer Simon Property Group, international hotelier Accor and hospitality firm SBE Entertainment Group are joining together to open so-called ghost kitchens at 200 locations, including vacant space at shopping malls, by the end of 2021.

The three companies have launched Creating Culinary Communities, or C3, which SBE described Monday as a new "way to approach food halls, ghost kitchens and mobile delivery." A ghost kitchen is a broad term that can encompass professional kitchen space for businesses that don’t have brick-and-mortar restaurant locations and only deliver or operate food trucks, as well as commissary space that national chains take to help fill their delivery orders or to prepare orders for their smaller eateries.

C3 will be bringing consumers food "from phone-to-table in under 30 minutes and for under $30 dollars," Sam Nazarian, SBE's founder and CEO, said in a statement.

"I view C3 as the Netflix-equivalent of food and beverage as we focus on constantly creating culinary content that can be delivered to consumers via non-traditional distribution channels," he said. "C3 will be the first entity to bring single operator, multi-branded solutions to food halls, ghost kitchens and mobile delivery."

C3 has started construction of its first major restaurant, Citizens, which is scheduled to have a ghost kitchen and open at Manhattan West, the 7 million-square-foot project that Brookfield Properties is developing in the Hudson Yards district on New York City’s West Side, according to SBE. The 40,000-square-foot restaurant, by award-winning interior designer David Rockwell, will have two full-service restaurants, multiple bars and a fast-casual market hall.

Citizens will also have a 5,000-square-foot ghost kitchen, one of the largest in New York, which will serve customers both at the food hall as well as through delivery, according to SBE. The Miami-based firm said "through the growing network of ghost kitchens, C3 will take a major step in reimagining the concept of food delivery."

In part, ghost kitchens provide a new use for vacant space at sites such as malls, which have seen vacancies because of the demise and bankruptcy filings of a number of national retail chains. The commissary kitchens also provide businesses a way to offer food for delivery, an increasingly popular choice for consumers, without the expense of opening a brick-and-mortar restaurant or over-burdening such locations.

There are other players in the ghost kitchen arena, including CloudKitchen, a company led by former Uber Technologies CEO Travis Kalanick, and Kitchen United, which is backed by RXR Realty and GV, formerly Google Ventures. C3 has signed four leases with CloudKitchen for ghost kitchens, according to The Wall Street Journal.

Officials at SBE and Simon declined to comment. Accor and CloudKitchen did not return requests for more information.

But in his statement, Nazarian called C3 and Indianapolis-based Simon a perfect match because of the mall owner’s "global real estate platform" and "continued commitment to rethinking consumer experiences." And Accor’s part in the ghost kitchens "will allow C3 to rethink the use of hotel real estate to play a significant role in the world of delivery, revolutionizing the in-room dining experience and, in turn, growing the delivery footprint of our C3 brands," according to Nazarian.

C3 has ghost kitchens slated for the King of Prussia Mall in Pennsylvania, Lenox Square in Atlanta and the Sanderson London hotel, according to the Journal.

"Our unrivaled portfolio of iconic retail, dining and entertainment destinations generates billions of visits each year and provide an ideal platform to re-imagine dining and culinary experiences that meet the evolving tastes of our customers," Simon CEO David Simon said in a statement. "C3 is another example of Simon partnering with dynamic, best-in-class brands to build the next generation of experiential destinations."

C3 has four chefs on its roster, namely Dani Garcia, Masaharu Morimoto, Dario Cecchini and SBE Chief Culinary Officer Martin Heierling. Garcia, as a three-star Michelin chef, will launch his Mediterranean tapas-style concept across the C3 ghost kitchen platform.

Monday, February 3, 2020

CNBC’s “Squawk on the Street” on Commercial Real Estate (Video)

Co-Living Brand Quarters to Open Second Location in Philly

by John Jordan
New York City-based co-living provider reports it will build a new 113,000-square-foot ground-up development at 1201 Callowhill St. that will feature 239 bedrooms across shared apartments.

The six-story,113,700-square-foot development will include 4,000 square feet of retail, a 42-space parking garage, a 5,000-square-foot outdoor roof deck and a 2,900-square foot ground-floor lobby, which will offer co-working and lounge areas.
The owner and developer of the Philadelphia site, Richard Zeghibe—founder of Patriot Parking—is expecting to break ground on the building in the second quarter of 2020 and plans to complete construction in the fourth quarter of 2021.

“We made our foray into Philadelphia in May 2019 at 1150 North American St., which will open in the second quarter of 2020” says Gunther Schmidt, founder and CEO of Quarters. “We’re thrilled to bring an additional 239 bedrooms to the market, to meet the growing demand for flexibility.”

The announcement of the second location in Philadelphia follows the company’s $300-million raise for its U.S. expansion in January 2019 and its $1.1-billion raise for its European expansion in December 2018.

In addition to planned expansion in New York City, Philadelphia, Chicago, Austin and Washington, DC, the $300-million investment program includes target cities such as San Francisco, Boston, Denver, Seattle and Miami, with several sites due to be announced throughout 2020.

Last week, Quarters announced plans for two new locations in Brooklyn, NY. The new properties will add more than 200 beds to the Quarters’ Brooklyn portfolio and boosts its presence in New York City to five locations, according to multiple press reports.

UPS Expanding Operations in 4 PA Locations

Governor Tom Wolf announced that United Parcel Service (UPS), the world’s largest package delivery company and a provider of supply chain management solutions, will expand its operations in the commonwealth, supporting the creation of 1,721 new, full-time jobs and the retention of 6,458 full-time jobs.

“With a foundation of longevity and rich history, UPS is a company that is still growing at a rapid rate, serving the needs of people in all corners of the commonwealth on a daily basis,” said Gov. Wolf. “Our investment in this global company will not only ensure that customers across Pennsylvania will continue to receive the service they expect, but also local communities will benefit from the combined creation and retention of thousands of good-paying, full-time jobs.”

The company will expand its operations to four locations in Pennsylvania—Cumberland, Dauphin, Northampton, and Philadelphia counties—and will invest in building renovations, equipment, and infrastructure improvements at each of the locations. The company has committed to investing at least $1.4 billion in the project.

“UPS is grateful for the strong relationship we continue to build with the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. We are excited to bring new jobs to Pennsylvania and we are committed to engaging in the communities where we are expanding our operations.” said Juan Perez, UPS Chief Information and Engineering Officer. “From small business owners growing their customer base to manufacturers moving parts and products, and e-tailers looking for efficient and fast order fulfillment, companies of all sizes throughout the Northeast will benefit from UPS’s latest global network transformation initiative.”

UPS received a funding proposal from the Department of Community and Economic Development for $2.7 million in Job Creation Tax Credits to be distributed following the creation of the new jobs, $5.6 million in Infrastructure and Facilities Improvement Program funding, and $659,400 in grants for workforce training and development. The project was coordinated by the Governor’s Action Team, an experienced group of economic development professionals who report directly to the governor and work with businesses that are considering locating or expanding in Pennsylvania.

Founded in 1907 as a messenger company in the United States, UPS has grown into a multi-billion-dollar corporation by clearly focusing on the goal of enabling commerce around the globe. Today, UPS is a global company with one of the most recognized and admired brands in the world. The world’s largest package delivery company and a leading global provider of specialized transportation and logistics services, UPS manages the flow of goods, funds, and information in more than 200 countries and territories worldwide.