In the News—Week of February 19, 2024

 In The Title Trove

Deal of the Week

An entity tracing to Wallcon recently sold an office industrial contractors yard for $2,100,00 in Gilbert, Arizona. The debt on the transaction was provided by MidFirst Bank. The deal was closed by Assistant Vice President & Escrow Officer, Joel Montemayor, in our Scottsdale, Arizona office.

National

Developer considers a giant billboard instead of a 56-story office building

Vornado Realty Trust’s original idea for the former site of the Hotel Pennsylvania was a 56-foot office tower called The Penn Platform. Call it a sign of the times, but Vornado is now weighing the idea of a 156-foot billboard on the site, therealdeal.com reports. That is just one option. Others include tennis courts and facilities for events such as New York Fashion Week. Politicians like the idea of turning the property into affordable housing. The Hotel Pennsylvania was built in 1919, closed in 2020 and was torn down last year.

National

Corporate giants look to sublease prime Manhattan office space

Warner Bros., Facebook, Pfizer and other major companies didn’t want to get into the office landlord business, but that is where they find themselves. The New York Post reports there is 20 million square feet of office space available for sublease. Upscale Hudson Yards seems to be the poster child for prime, empty office space, with 2 million square feet of subleases available. And the list of companies in that area looking to rent out space they don’t need reads like a who’s who of corporate America. “Cash is king and having good credit is everything. If you have a creditworthy tenant, the landlord is rolling out the red carpet,” one leasing agent tells the newspaper.

National

Big 12 Conference is relocating headquarters within DFW area

With all the shuffling of schools that has gone on in college sports in the past two years, it seems only fitting that the Big 12 Conference would find itself on the move. The conference, which will expand to 16 teams with the addition of Colorado, Utah, Arizona and Arizona State this fall, will move its headquarters to Williams Square in Irving, Texas, Commercial Search reports. The conference signed a lease for 14,107 square feet. The conferences’ previous home was about 2 miles away, an 18,000-square-foot building at 400 E. John W. Carpenter Freeway. The Big 12 has retained Cushman & Wakefield to find a buyer for that building.

National

Fred’s Texas Café is sold to make way for Fort Worth Cultural District

Fred’s Texas Café, which has occupied 915 Currie St. in Fort Worth since 1978, has been sold to Younger Partners, Fort Worth Magazine reports. Before the burger joint came on the scene, the property had been the site of other eateries, dating back to the 1940s. The area had been known as Crockett Row, but it is now the Artisan Circle of the Cultural District. “We believe in the transformative power of real estate, and with this acquisition, we are poised to bring additional positive changes that will enrich the entire community,” says Kathy Permenter, co-managing partner of Younger Partners. Fred’s is not gone. There are two other locations in the Fort Worth area.

Arizona

GTIS Partners, Clyde Capital to develop $250M mixed-use project in Surprise

GTIS Partners and Clyde Capital plan to develop a $250 million mixed-use, master-planned community in Surprise, mulitfamilybiz.com reports. Called Asante Trails, the project will include a build-to-rent community, retail and a medical facility. It will be built on 90 acres on North 163rd Avenue, bounded by U.S. Highway 60 and Pat Tillman Boulevard. “We are excited about delivering more housing and employment options to the region. This site is strategically located in the rapidly growing Surprise submarket of Phoenix, which is currently undersupplied with rental housing options yet is adjacent to the Loop 303 industrial corridor, Phoenix’s fastest growing job market,” says Rob Vahradian, head of U.S. Investments at GTIS.

Arizona

Office rents in Greater Phoenix keep rising despite number of vacancies

While the office market in Greater Phoenix suffered through negative absorption in 2023, rental rates continued to rise, AZ Big Media reports. Figures from Colliers in Arizona show in the Phoenix area market a net absorption of minus 177,760 square feet. Most of the negative net absorption took place in Tempe, Deer Valley and Downtown North. Rental rates in the Phoenix area rose 1.09% during the fourth quarter and 2.6% for the year.

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