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Jan. 11, 2013

New York Opportunity Fund Closes on $5.2M Acquisition of Long-Vacant Downtown Building

by Adriana Pop, Associate Editor

In a $5.2 million deal, real estate investor Howard Lavitt and his partners at LRC Opportunity Fund of New York have acquired a long vacant, 11-story, office building in downtown Raleigh. The Triangle Business Journal reports that the transaction closed on Dec. 21. Ben Kilgore with CBRE in Raleigh represented the sellers, New York businessmen Morton Rosenfeld and Milton Schwartz.

Located at 227 Fayetteville Street, the 100,000-square-foot property has been empty since its former tenant, Wachovia Bank, moved out in 2003. Wachovia developed the building in 1964, after signing a 50-year ground lease with the owners of the lot. The contract expired in January 2011, and the ownership of the structure was transferred to the land owners’ heirs.

Plans now call for the interior renovation of the building, which should be complete by the fourth quarter of 2013. Project manager Steve Weitnauer with Solutions PDM is in charge of the demolition and reconstruction, while Davidson and Jones Construction Co. are the general contractor.

In regional multifamily news, Elco Landmark Residential of Tampa, Fla., and Canada-based Timbercreek Asset Management are the new owners of a 264-unit apartment complex in Chapel Hill. According to the Triangle Business Journal, Birmingham, Ala.-based Colonial Properties Trust sold the Colonial Village at Highland Hills for $17.75 million.

The acquisition was part of a $95.4 million transaction that included another three apartment communities in North Carolina, Texas and Virginia. The Elco/Timbercreek partnership has also purchased the 476-unit Heatherwood Apartment Homes in Charlotte, the 229-unit Colonial Village at Canyon Hills in Austin, Texas and the 425-unit Autumn Hill Apartments in Charlottesville, Va. The entire portfolio formerly owned by Colonial Properties amounts to 1,380 apartments and is 95 percent occupied.

Photo credits: Steve Wilson via www.bizjournals.com