In the News—Week of March 4, 2024

 In The Title Trove

Deal of the Week

In January, a Canadian capital group sold a 71-unit townhome complex to an Arizona-based investor for $6.95 million. The multifamily project, near historic Downtown Glendale, Arizona, was under construction at the time of closing. In February, the new owners closed a $15 million construction loan to complete the project. The lender was a privately held bank that has a substantial presence in the Arizona market. Both transactions were closed by Senior Commercial Escrow Officer Sheila Hunter.

National

Suburban Cherry Creek booms as downtown Denver struggles

Downtown Denver’s office vacancies have climbed while suburban Cherry Creek is booming, The Denver Gazette reports. Figures from CBRE show downtown office vacancies reached 31% in the fourth quarter. Cherry Creek is between 1% and 6%. “It’s a hot place to be for the office market, and it’s happening because downtown has not been,” says Mike Martin, broker and owner of Cherry Creek Commercial. Tenants are paying $40 to $65 a square foot for office space in Cherry Creek. That’s slightly more than in downtown Denver.

National

JLL sets up refinancing for jewel of New York City’s Financial District

JLL announced that it has secured refinancing for a 66-story building in the Financial District of New York City. The mixed- use property at 70 Pine Street offers 612, high-end rental residences, along with retail, hotel space and several restaurants. JLL helped DTH Capital and Rose Associates secure the $395 million. The building opened in 1932 and was renovated in 2016.

National

Creditor acquires landmark building in Portland at foreclosure auction

Montgomery Park in northwest Portland, recognizable for the large neon sign on its rooftop, has been acquired by its lender, New York-based Natixis, The Oregonian reports. New York-based Natixis made a credit bid of $37.7 million in a foreclosure auction. There were no other bids. In 2019, the building sold for $255 million. UPG Montgomery Park owed about $126 million. Natixis has hired Newmark to sell the building.

National

Commercial real estate sales dip 64% in Seattle metro area

Commercial real estate sales in Seattle metro area fell by 64% in 2023, The Real Deal reports. Figures from the Commercial Brokers Association show CRE sales last year totaled $6.3 billion, slightly better than $5.6 billion in 2011 in the aftermath of the Great Recession. Fourth quarter sales in 2023 were down 51% over the previous year. Analysts expect sales to rebound in 2024 in part because interest rates have peaked. “While this is a positive signal of activity, and the market may see an uptick in 2024, a number of these sales are properties transacting below replacement cost or at reduced values paid compared to just five to six years ago,” researchers wrote in the report.

Arizona

Greater Phoenix experiences surge of demand for retail space

The Phoenix metro area is enjoying its lowest vacancy rate for retail space in 40 years, AZ Big Media reports. Figures from Velocity Retail Group show that overall vacancy for retail is 4.8%, and the number of empty big-box spaces in the metro area fell from 123 vacant big boxes to 90 over the course of 2023. Power centers were built in Surprise, Buckeye and east Mesa as national chains that had not expanded since 2009 opened outlets.

Arizona

Axon CEO drops hints that he is ready to tell Scottsdale goodbye

Axon CEO and founder Rick Smith told investors he is not sure Scottsdale wants his company to stay, The East Valley Tribune reports. “We would like Axon to remain headquartered in Scottsdale where we own a piece of land and where we have built this business. I love Scottsdale,” Smith said in a call with investors. Axon, best-known for its Taser stun guns, is having trouble getting the city to OK the company’s revised plans for a headquarters campus. The city had approved Axon’s initial plans. But Axon now wants the campus to include a sizable residential component.

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