During the third quarter, MEPT committed $7.0 million toward pre-development costs associated with Capitol Hill Station in Seattle. Capitol Hill Station, located at the site of the Capitol Hill Link Light Rail station, is anticipated to be a LEED Platinum, 332-unit multi-family asset with 33,024 square feet of retail space. Capitol Hill Station is structured as a joint venture with Portland, Oregon-based Gerding Edlen Development, and the transaction is aligned with the Fund’s focus on responsible investment in transit-oriented locations within knowledge-driven Primary Markets.
Capitol Hill is Seattle’s densest residential neighborhood and offers an amenity rich district with an eclectic mix of cultural, entertainment, and dining options. Furthermore, Seattle’s major employment districts, including the Central Business District (CBD), Denny Triangle, and South Lake Union, are easily accessed from the neighborhood by various modes of transit, including the light rail. In addition, there is significant employment at three major hospital systems on First Hill (the adjacent neighborhood), Seattle Central Community College, and a growing “creative-class” workforce in Capitol Hill. All these attributes contribute to strong and diverse demand for housing in the neighborhood.
Additionally, during the third quarter, MEPT committed $31.3 million towards the redevelopment associated with 22 Boston Wharf, a 58,132 square foot existing office asset in Boston. MEPT plans to build two addition floors which will add nearly 50,000 square feet to the property. Further redevelopment plans including updating the common area spaces and additional building renovations.
During the third quarter, MEPT sold Jefferson at Plymouth, a multi-family asset in Minneapolis, for total gross proceeds of $54.3 million. The 96 percent leased, 301-unit apartment asset was built in 2002 and acquired by MEPT in 2006. MEPT had reached the preferred 7-10 year holding period on the asset and after completing a number of upgrades to the common areas of the apartments, the asset was listed for sale. After a month on the market with multiple offers, Jefferson at Plymouth was sold for a price above the appraised value.
During the second quarter, MEPT committed $143.2 million towards the development of 1001 W Chicago Avenue. The proposed two-tower, 363-unit multi-family development is located in Chicago’s River West neighborhood, a transformative and rapidly growing area, that is easily accessible via multiple bus lines, the CTA metro line, as well as being located along the new "Spoke Route" bicycle lanes. The apartment units at 1001 W Chicago Avenue will provide a modern livable space, with an extensive amenity package, including an outdoor activity deck, a "family-room" lounge area with game room and bar area, as well as a bike repair shop and music room. Additionally, the asset will have 44,000 square feet of retail space which can accommodate a grocer and other resident-focused amenities. The acquisition is in line with MEPT’s "build-to-core" strategy and increases the Fund’s allocation to transit-oriented, urban multi-family assets.
At the end of the second quarter, MEPT acquired 147 Milk Street in Boston for a total gross purchase price of $33.4 million. The fully leased, 52,000 square foot medical office asset is located in the center of downtown Boston, just one block from the heart of the Financial District. This acquisition is in line with MEPT’s strategic goal of increasing the Fund’s exposure to assets located in the CBD’s of primary markets, as well as medical office assets. The location is ideal for medical office, as it offers a convenient choice for the substantial daily-workforce as well as the rapidly growing resident population in the downtown area.
During the quarter, MEPT received total gross proceeds of $57.0 million for the disposition of three assets. Pictoria Corporate Center, a 94 percent leased, 252,000 square foot office asset in Cincinnati, was targeted for sale due to its location in a suburban office market with weakening leasing fundamentals. Pictoria Corporate Center was sold for $27.1 million. 160 Post Street-Land Loan, a one-year term loan, was originated in the second quarter of 2015 to facilitate a proposed multi-family development which ultimately proceeded without MEPT as an investor. As part of the loan agreement, the Fund received $5.9 million from the repayment, which includes both the principal loan amount as well a portion from interest and fees. Finally, the fund sold a land asset in Seattle, which was purchased by the Avalon Bay Company for $24.0 million.
In March, MEPT acquired Two Rector Street, a 473,975 square foot office building in the Financial District of Manhattan for a gross price and redevelopment commitment of $323.8 million. The Art Deco aesthetics and unique layout make Two Rector Street a truly unique 26-story office tower in one of the most renowned and resurgent office submarkets in the world. The Financial District, and more specifically the World Trade Center area, has re-emerged as a 24/7, highly amenitized live/work/play environment. In a joint venture with Cove Property Group, MEPT intends to renovate and reposition the building as a Class A office property with new elevators, mechanical systems and a redesigned lobby in order to attract the highest-quality tenancy. MEPT expects Two Rector to cater to technology, advertising, media and information firms as well as traditional financial services tenants. Further, this asset will be well positioned to benefit from the completion of the World Trade Center transit hub and a flow of tenants from the Midtown and Midtown South submarkets. This acquisition brings MEPT’s total investment in the New York market to over $1.5 billion with more than 2.1 million square feet. Two Rector Street aligns well with the Fund’s focus on responsible investment in transit-oriented locations serving knowledge industry tenants.
In the first quarter, MEPT committed $77 million to finance the construction of 9th & Thomas, a planned 12-story, 165,000 square foot boutique, multi-tenant office building in Seattle. Through a shared-appreciation mortgage, MEPT will help finance the construction and participate in the cash flow and appreciation of the asset once it is stabilized. The project is a legacy development of the Redman family which has owned the 9th & Thomas parcel in the South Lake Union submarket for more than 70 years. In 1944, the site was developed as the original home of Sellen Construction. Today, Sellen Construction is led by Scott Redman and has become the Pacific Northwest’s largest privately owned and managed union-signatory, construction company. Sellen will develop the project that is designed to include flexible floor plates, outdoor decks and gardens, high-end amenities and a first floor configured as a community "living room" surrounded by retail. The project will seek LEED® Gold certification. This investment is consistent with MEPT’s plan to invest in urban office projects and will complement the Fund’s other nearby investment in South Lake Union.