WEST HARTFORD: Corbins Corner is getting a lift with the help of the Town Council which voted unanimously to approve a developer’s plan to redevelop the Sears retail and automotive stores when the shuttered stores vacate this month.
Sears stores continue to struggle and Seritage Growth Properties a $2.6 billion dollar publicly trade Real Estate Investment Trust [NYSE SRG]: purchased the locations across the country. The West Hartford store was closed in January and Seritage is redeveloping the property as The Corbin Collection, with an expected price tag of $27 million. Construction is expected to begin immediately and be completed in 2017.
Shake Shack, Saks Fifth Avenue Off 5th and REI outdoor store is relocating from Blue Back Square in West Hartford Center.
DANBURY: The Society of Industrial and Office Realtors [SIOR], released the results of its semi-annual membership survey of its Connecticut/Western Massachusetts chapter’s members . There are more than 3,100 SIOR members in the US and Realtors with the SIOR designation are considered within the industry to be among the most well trained and educated commercial real estate professionals.
According to SIOR, the survey reports “a continuation of the positive trend established earlier in 2016. Responses have trended away from negative to either stable or improvement.”
HARTFORD: A recent survey by the Connecticut Economic Resource Center’s Real Estate Survey showed a majority of real estate professionals were claiming a soft office market in local communities across Connecticut. Large corporate office space lessors are reportedly becoming increasingly difficult to find in Fairfield County, but that apparently isn’t slowing down investors in Connecticut office buildings.
By Mitchell Young
DANBURY: GE’s sale of its sprawling campus to Sacred Heart University and the relocation of employees to Boston and Norwalk, appears to be part of a larger undercurrent of corporate management. Major companies revisiting how they structure their faclity needs is having a major impact on Fairfield County’s corporate real estate market.
Making matters more difficult for two signature office buildings however, is the untimely death of the founder of the Matrix Realty Group.
Norwalk: Hearst Connecticut Newspapers have consolidated their office into a regional headquarters at Merritt 7 Corporate Park, Norwalk. Hearst has signed a new 11 year lease for 30,251 square feet in building 301 in the six building, 1.4 million square foot office complex.
Margaret Egan, Senior Vice President, Clarion Partners the owners of Merrit 7 said, “this brings their entire Fairfield County workforce to a Class-A workplace environment, allowing Hearst to optimize its operations."
GLASTONBURY: United Bank [United Financial Corp, NASDAQ: UNBK] is making a big deposit in downtown Hartford. William H. W. Crawford, IV, CEO is relocating the bank’s headquarters from Glastonbury to 68,000 square feet at Goodwin Square, 225 Asylum Street, in downtown.
The move will occur in the third quarter of this year and will bring 200 employees to the city. United Bank currently occupies 48,000 square feet of space at 45 Glastonbury Boulevard. Still under lease, the bank is seeking to sublet the space. Bank officials cited a very tight office market in town as one reason for the relocation.
The quick take away: respondents are generally positive about markets, except for the office market and the overall economy, Of the 72 respondents 47 were brokers and 15 economic development professionals from Connecticut and out-of-state, nearly one-third of respondents were from New Haven County. CERC's survey tracked with Society of Industrial and Office Realtors [SIOR], released the results of its semi-annual membership survey of its members.
Real Living Wareck D’Ostilio Real Estate announced the $4,700,000 sale of a New Britain retail center owned by Ettcon & Company. The center was formerly anchored by a CVS which moved earlier last year. Tenants Subway, Family Dollar and Oak Hill School are among those that still occupy the property. The owner plans to fill the CVS store with a possible medical use, complementing the new hospital planned for across the street. Ken Ginsberg of RLWD Commercial represented the seller as the listing broker and Robert Cole of Property World represented the buyer.
John Wareck and Frank D’Ostilio, principals of Real Living Wareck D’Ostilio Real Estate have announced the launch of a new company, WD Management, LLC. This full service property management company will oversee the operation of rental apartment complexes, commercial, retail and industrial real estate properties all over Connecticut.
Neil P. Currie, licensed in real estate, was introduced as the Director of the company. During his career, Currie has headed sales and leasing departments, personally managed and over-seen day-to-day property operations for rental apartment complexes. He earned his a B.A. in East Asian Studies and Architecture and master’s degree in Urban and Environmental Planning from the University of Virginia.
STAMFORD: Henkel Corp. based in Dusseldorf, Germany has a wide range of consumer and industrial products, and more than 50,000 employees world wide. The company has facilities throughout the United States and its US headquarters is in Rocky Hill, along with the research division for its adhesives business.
Henkel is expanding in Stamford, moving into 155,000 square feet of space at the BLT Center. According to a report in the Stamford Advocate the company decided to increase its space allocation from 135,000 square feet to bring the research and marketing functions closer together.
Henkel brands include Dial soap, Right Guard, Loctite, Purel and many others. According to the report the company is expected to nearly double its employment to 500 employees by 2018.
NORWALK: Webster Bank has extended its branch commitment to its 192 Westport Avenue location with a new long term lease extension. The twenty year lease between Oxbank II, LLC with offices located at 2614 Boston Post Rdoad and Webster has a $4.5 million value. The branch is a 2,942 square feet free standing building on a .51 acre lot.
The bank has been at that location for ten years and was a build-to-suit de novo bank on behalf of Webster in 2006.
Mike O’Connor, president of operations for Webster Bank, reaffirmed Webster’s commitment to the location and market by overseeing the process of this lease extension internally on behalf of the bank. Michael Berke, president of Oxford Real Estate Group, Inc.
OLD LYME: Prospect Transportation, headquartered in Carlstadt, NJ is expected to build a new facility at 36-38 Hatchetts Hill Road in Old Lyme. The company has signed a short term lease for office space, a truck bay and parking and storage facilities and has an option to buy a 6.23 acre lot at 38 Hatchetts Hill Road. Both properties are owned by Hatchetts Hill LLC, represented by Norm Peck of Pequot Commercial. Prospect is represented by Ron Lyman of Lyman Real Estate in Westbrook.
Prospect Transportation plans to build its Connecticut headquarters at the site to provide fuel delivery and related services to large fuel suppliers, such as airports, gas stations, bus terminals, ferry docks, fleets and other refueling stations.
STAMFORD: Paredim Partners LLC of White Plains, NY acquired Parallel 41 Apartments, a 124-unit class A apartment building at 1340 Washington Boulevard for $33.5 million from Conerstone Real Estate Advisers LLC . Paredim’s announcement said the purchase “marks the company’s entry into the city’s apartment market.”
Parallel 41 is a six-story mid-rise elevator building, built in 2012 it has five stories of residential apartments above a surface parking level.
PLAINVILLE: The Tomasso Group’s Medical Arts Center [the MOB] has been sold for $30.25 million. The MOB is located at 201 North Mountain Road, about 10 miles southeast of downtown Hartford, at the Hartford Healthcare Cancer Institute, a joint venture between the hospital and Memorial Sloan Kettering. The buyer a publicly traded Real Estate Investment Trust was not disclosed at the time of the announcement.
Completed in 2014, the MOB is connected to, and shares a lobby with the Cancer Center, which leases the entire first floor of the MOB. The property is 95% leased and tenants include Hartford Healthcare, Orthopedic Associates of Hartford, and Hartford Healthcare-employed physicians.
BRIDGEPORT: New leases at 1000 Lafayette Boulevard one of Bridgeport’s premier office properties is demonstrating new interest in the city’s downtown. Colliers International, with its Fairfield County office in Stamford, was the broker for the two new world class clients.
COWI North America a bridge, tunnel and marine engineering consulting group is relocating to downtown Bridgeport, from 35 Corporate drive in Trumbull, a suburban campus environment. The firm will occupy 8,204 square feet of space on the 10th floor, of the 11 story 214,000 square foot property, which they expect to move into this fall.
MIDDLETOWN: Hamilton Point Investments LLC announced the sale of Wilcox Apartments, an 81-unit apartment property in Middletown. The property was acquired by HPI Wilcox DST in a Delaware Statutory Trust 1031-syndicated acquisition, the sale price was $7,000,000. The investment provided the 1031-exchange investors with a 1.62x multiple on equity, including distributions, and a 14.01% net IRR over an approximately four-year hold period.
STAMFORD: J. Philip Commercial Group Brokerage of Mahopac, NY completed the $2.35 million sale of 184 Selleck Street, a 16,000 square foot industrial building.
The building has been occupied for the last century by Hathaway, Reiser & Raymond, one of the last sail boating maintenance shops in the state. Fritz Chery, of J. Philip Commercial, represented the sellers, Tom Anderson and John Savage of Hathaway, Reiser & Raymond, as well as the buyer, Dr. Philip Putter of Spot On Veterinary.