Seattle Commercial Real Estate News of the Day

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Find Space Now! Seattle Times Daily Journal of Commerce Headline
Our lease listings SEA still ranks high for CRE investment Federal Way OKs sale of development site
Our sale listings King County’s September jobless rate holds steady Federal Way officials are moving ahead with another developer on long-held plans to create a downtown center.

Three months ago the city agreed to work with Arcadd, a Massachusetts-based architecture firm that is proposing to develop a bold project called Crystal Way. That agreement has moved to the next phase with the city council’s decision to sell a 4-acre site to Arcadd.

Arcadd is working with the Seattle-area offices of MulvannyG2 Architecture and DCI Engineering on Crystal Way, which could cost about $300 million.

The property is at South 316th Street and 20th Avenue South. Federal Way bought the land five years ago for $4.1 million, and agreed in 2007 to sell it to a Canadian developer for $6.2 million. Plans for that development fell through and a subsequent one also fizzled, so city officials looked for another group.

Arcadd’s project was selected over proposals by two other groups, including Williams & Dame, a developer that was a driving force behind Portland’s successful Pearl District.

Federal Way officials view the project as a catalyst that can help transform the city center, according to Economic Development Director Patrick Doherty. Crystal Way will do that, he said, because it will encourage other businesses to open and expand.

Doherty said Arcadd President Hisham Ashkouri is an internationally known architect who designs “iconic, eye-catching buildings.” The Iraqi-born Ashkouri’s firm specializes in public facilities for domestic and international clients. He won a competition to design the UAE Public Library and Cultural Center, which houses a library, auditorium and conference/exhibit center in Abu Dhabi.

Crystal Way is expected to have about 480 housing units, 120,000 square feet of commercial space, 50,000 square feet of recreational space and 75,000 square feet of exhibit space. There will be five 20-story towers and ten 10-story buildings in the complex.

Doherty said Arcadd has not said whether it will be built in phases.

Arcadd is planning to use private domestic equity financing, though city officials didn’t name specific sources. Doherty said the city will know more when the project financing information is submitted.

Future steps include executing an agreement, doing an environmental site assessment and reconciling two appraisals to determine the purchase price.

The city wants to complete the sale early next year.

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Market Research Puget Sound Business Journal
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Research reports Zynga IPO expected before Thanksgiving
Articles & white papers Boeing must deliver 1,100 787 Dreamliners to recover costs
Weekly market insight
2011 forecast
Enjoy Your Reading! Seattle-area home prices weaker than nation’s
Commercial Property Executive Should we put a parking garage under Occidental Square Park?
Daily Journal of Commerce Home prices up in half of major US cities
CoStar Group
GlobeSt Other News
National RE Investor The Schuster Group Acquires Office/Flex Buildings in Tukwila
Realty News Report Fitch Affirms Port Of Seattle Bonds
Real Estate Business New Tricks for Old Malls
Reis Apartment Values, Rents Rise
Commercial Post Oxford Properties Targets U.S.
New York Times Tacoma City Council extends discussion on big-box moratorium
Weekly Market Insight
S&P/Case-Shiller 20-City Home Price Index

3-Month Moving Average, Seasonally Adjusted, Jan. 2000= 100

Source: S&P Indices, Grubb & Ellis

Home prices based on repeat sales fell by 31.8 percent between April 2006 and May 2009 according to the S&P/Case-Shiller Home Price Index 20-city composite. After that, prices rallied 4.7 percent in response to the home buyer tax credit of 2009 and 2010 before sinking again after the credit expired in September 2010. The index hit a new low in March of this year and has been bouncing along the bottom since then, weakening in each of the past four months. On a year-over-year basis, the index is down 3.8 percent. Washington, D.C. and Detroit are the only cities where prices rose over the past year, up 2.7 percent and 0.3 percent, respectively. At the other extreme, the average price fell 8.5 percent in Minneapolis. Foreclosures, which account for 20 to 30 percent of total sales, are weighing down the index as are abysmally low levels of consumer confidence, tight lending standards and meager job creation. The struggling housing market has been a boon for apartments as the homeownership rate continues to fall, and it has been a bane for home furnishings stores, home improvement stores and other types of retailers benefiting from home sales.

About CRE Northwest

Specialist in office & investment real estate in Seattle & the Eastside
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