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Tax Incentives Draw $1B Revitalization to Camden, N.J.

25 Sep 2015, 7:56 pm

By Adriana Pop, Associate Editor

Joined by public officials and South Jersey power players, major developer Liberty Property Trust unveiled plans for a transformative $1 billion complex that is meant to revitalize a 16-acre swath of Camden’s waterfront along the Delaware River.

Camden Waterfront

Camden Waterfront, N.J.

Designed by renowned Robert A.M. Stern. Architects, the Camden Waterfront project calls for 1.7 million square feet of office space in two towers, 325 units of housing, a hotel retail space, and parking garages. If approved, the development will be the largest private sector investment in Camden’s history, creating thousands of construction jobs and bringing thousands of permanent jobs to the area.

According to The Morning Call, Liberty Property hopes to begin construction by the fall of 2016 and have the complex completely built in 2019.

The project is the latest and largest in a series of development initiatives announced in Camden since the passage of the Grow New Jersey act, which provides generous tax incentives through the Economic Development Authority to businesses that relocate to the state’s poorest cities. If developers meet certain conditions, including the creation of an agreed-upon number of jobs, they receive tax credits over 10 years equal to the amount they spend on construction.

Based in Malvern, Pennsylvania, Liberty Property Trust manages some of the largest office buildings in Center City Philadelphia. The company converted the city’s former Navy Yard into a thriving office park and is currently building a second skyscraper for Comcast.

Photo credits: Liberty Property Trust

Macy’s Announces New Bloomingdale’s Outlet Stores

25 Sep 2015, 2:05 pm

By Adriana Pop, Associate Editor

Macy’s Inc., one of the nation’s premier retailers, is planning to open two new Bloomingdale’s Outlet stores in November 2015. One of the outlets will be located at The Shops at Liberty Place (1625 Chestnut St.) in Center City Philadelphia while the other will be situated in Westfield Mission Valley in San Diego.

The Shops at Liberty Place in Center City Philadelphia

The Shops at Liberty Place in Center City Philadelphia

At the moment, there are 13 Bloomingdale’s Outlet locations that operate in nine states. The upcoming stores, along with a previously announced location set to open in November 2015 at 2085 Broadway (on the northwest corner of 72nd Street) in the heart of Manhattan’s Upper West Side, will bring their number to 16.

Both the Philadelphia and San Diego outlets will spread across approximately 20,000 square feet on one level and offer a range of off-price apparel and accessories in a compelling combination of fashion, quality and value.

“We are excited about the continued expansion of Bloomingdale’s Outlet stores,” Tony Spring, chairman & CEO of Bloomingdale’s, said. “In addition to our upcoming Manhattan location, Philadelphia and San Diego are powerful markets with outstanding destinations for our customers. We look forward to serving both communities with great value, savings, and style.”

First introduced in 2010, the Bloomingdale’s Outlet concept includes stores in California, Florida, Illinois, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New York, New Jersey, Texas, Virginia, and now Pennsylvania.

Photo credits: loopnet.com

Revamped Sheraton Great Valley Hotel Welcomes Guests

24 Sep 2015, 1:50 pm

By Adriana Pop, Associate Editor

Sheraton Great Valley Hotel in Frazer, Pa.

Sheraton Great Valley Hotel in Frazer, Pa.

GF Management invested $4 million into the redevelopment of the 193-key Sheraton Great Valley Hotel situated in the Malvern area, just outside of Philadelphia.

The company purchased the property through an affiliate in June 2014.

“We determined that this acquisition was a great opportunity to expand GF’s owned portfolio with a top quality asset,” Jeff Kolessar, senior vice president of Development and Acquisitions for GF Management, said. “This extensive renovation demonstrates our valued partnership with Starwood through our commitment to quality capital reinvestment.”

In addition to the complete overhaul of all its guestrooms, the refurbishment project brought a new main lobby, refreshed meeting and executive board room, as well as a brand-new fitness center and a resurfaced pool and sauna.

Guests may also enjoy the revitalized White Horse Tavern and Wine Bar, the hotel’s on-site restaurant, which dates back to 1715. At the time, the venue was one of the first licensed public houses in America. Besides its physical upgrades, the restaurant also updated its menu to support local farmers and provide fresh, farm-to-table meals.

GF Management now owns and/or asset manages five premiere properties within the Starwood Hotels and Resorts portfolio, consisting of over 1,300 guest rooms and suites. These acquisitions occurred over the last three years under various brands including Westin, Embassy Suites, Hilton Garden Inn, and Holiday Inn.

Photo credits: Sheraton Great Valley Hotel

Design Hub Coming to Center City

17 Sep 2015, 8:12 pm

By Adriana Pop, Associate Editor

National Real Estate Development and SSH Real Estate have announced that Philadelphia’s former family court building, currently under redevelopment, has landed its first corporate tenant.

East Market in Philadelphia

East Market Mixed-Use Development in Philadelphia

The Design Center, a group of designers and showrooms formerly known as Marketplace Design Center, will lease 48,000 square feet at 34 S. 11th St. in Center City. The group — which includes the Baer Collection, Beatrice & Martin, Croce, AK & CO, Harrington Group, Kravet, Pindler & Pindler, Robert Allen and Scalamandre — is set to move to the new location by the fall of 2016.

As a result of the lease agreement, the project’s developers have secured a $38.5 million construction loan from Wells Fargo to move forward with the renovation.

The upcoming Class A, modern office warehouse project is part of the $500 million East Market development. The 4.3-acre mixed-use project will span an entire city block, blending new-to-market retail and dining experiences with contemporary apartments to create a thriving urban destination for locals and tourists. Besides the 34 S. 11th St. renovation, the initial phase of the development encompasses additional buildings along Market Street that are scheduled to open in the summer and fall of 2016.

East Market is being developed by National Real Estate Development and is owned by National Real Estate Advisors, JOSS Realty Partners LLC, Young Capital LLC and SSH Real Estate.

“East Market will be a place for the creatives, innovators and young professionals who value design and originality and want to be in the center of it all. The Design Center showrooms perfectly complement our vision for this historic and transforming section of Philadelphia, and we are delighted to welcome them to East Market,” Daniel Killinger, managing director of National Real Estate Development, said in prepared remarks.

According to the Philadelphia Business Journal, some of the Design Center retailers have worked out of 2400 Market St., where they are currently located, for 40 years and had been seeking new space for quite a while. They were represented in their search by Jim Egan, an office broker with Newmark Grubb Knight Frank, and his colleagues Jeff Tertel and Matt Guerrieri.

Photo credit: National Real Estate Development

High-Rise Multifamily Community in Philly Changes Hands

11 Sep 2015, 6:20 pm

By Adriana Pop, Associate Editor

Equus Capital Partners has announced that its latest discretionary fund, Equus Investment Partnership X L.P., recently paid $42 million for the acquisition of Hill House Apartments, a 188-unit multifamily community located in the Chestnut Hill neighborhood of Philadelphia. The transaction marks the first multifamily investment for Equus Capital’s new affiliate.

Hill House Apartments in Philadelphia, Pa.

Hill House Apartments in Philadelphia, Pa.

Conveniently located next to SEPTA’s Chestnut Hill West regional rail station and Germantown Avenue, the iconic Hill House high-rise was 95 percent occupied at the time of closing. The 11-story property offers a mix of studio, one-, two-, and three-bedroom apartments, along with an array of amenities including underground parking, fitness center, and outdoor pool.

Residents have easy access to Chestnut Hill’s upscale retail and restaurant corridor, center city Philadelphia and major suburban employment centers in Montgomery County. Equus now plans to invest approximately $5 million into the renovation of the property’s common areas and amenities, as well as to complete the unit interior upgrades that were initiated under prior ownership.

Madison Apartment Group L.P., the multifamily operating arm of Equus, will manage the community. Prior to the sale, the property had been owned and managed by the family of the original developer, which remained undisclosed, and was represented in the transaction by Rittenhouse Realty Advisors.

“This community appeals in equal measure to both younger residents and empty nesters who value convenience, walkable amenities, and a desirable and safe neighborhood,” Greg Curci, vice president of Equus, who oversaw the acquisition for the firm, said in prepared remarks. “We look forward to delivering a living experience consistent with the heightened expectations of today’s renter.”

Equus Capital Partners Ltd. is one of the nation’s leading private equity real estate fund managers. Equus’ portfolio consists of more than 24 million square feet of office, retail, and industrial properties and nearly 16,000 apartment units in over 60 multifamily communities located throughout the United States. The firm is headquartered in the Philadelphia area, with a principal office in Yardley, Pa., and with offices in Philadelphia, Los Angeles, Chicago, Washington D.C., Boston, Atlanta, and Raleigh-Durham.

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