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10 Must Reads for the CRE Industry Today (November 25, 2015)

10 Must Reads for the CRE Industry Today (November 25, 2015)


  1. Blackstone Said in Talks to Sell L.A. Towers to Douglas Emmett “Blackstone Group LP is in talks to sell four Los Angeles office towers to a group led by Douglas Emmett Inc. for more than $1 billion, according to a person with knowledge of the negotiations. The buildings total 1.7 million square feet (158,000 square meters). Three of the towers are on Wilshire Boulevard -- at 10880, 10940 and 10960 Wilshire -- in the Westwood commercial district near the campus of University of California, Los Angeles. (Bloomberg)
  2. In South Florida, More Builders Buy in Bulk “As prime development sites become scarce in many parts of the country, particularly in coastal areas like South Florida, condominium developers are becoming more creative in their efforts to secure buildable land. More builders nowadays are targeting existing condos and cooperative buildings in desirable locations with the intention of tearing them down and building anew, analysts said.” (Wall Street Journal)
  3. Real Estate: Nothing’s Normal About This New Normal “With 300,000 new residents expected in 2016, Florida is Florida again, and the real estate market is roaring back. Or is it? Yes and no, the three News-Press Market Watch experts say in this analysis of the third quarter of 2015. It’s a market unlike any they’ve seen, where you can be right or wrong, and some of the most spectacular wins seem to come from left field.” (
  4. Farmland: A Growing Investment Option “The last 20 years have seen a new asset category grow in popularity… farmland. And it's easy to see why, because farmland is profitable. In fact, the National Council of Real Estate Investment Fiduciaries' ((NCREIF)) Farmland Index had an average annual return of 12% over 20 years. That beat the NCREIF's Commercial Property Index and the S&P 500's return of about 9%. It also topped investment-grade corporate bonds, which had returns in the 7% range.” (Seeking Alpha)
  5. Cornell Tech Project Tests ‘Passive’ Design in the U.S. “A new European building method that is touted to cut energy costs by as much as 90% is going to get one of its first big U.S. tests at a new technology campus that Cornell University is developing on an island in New York City’s East River. The first  residential building on the Cornell Tech campus that is beginning to take shape on Roosevelt Island is using cutting-edge design, materials and insulation to make the tower virtually airtight.” (Wall Street Journal
  6. Hudson Yards Resi Tower Secures $1.3B in Financing “Related Companies and Oxford Properties Group closed on a $1.3 billion financing package for 15 Hudson Yards yesterday. The finance package includes equity provided by Related, Oxford and a sovereign wealth fund, tax-exempt bonds from New York State Housing Finance Agency and an $850 million construction loan provided by London-based The Children’s Investment Fund.” (Commercial Observer)
  7. $1.3 Billion Financing for Biggest Office Deal in Beantown “New York Life Real Estate Investors has given more than a helping hand to a joint venture between Oxford Properties Group and a group of institutional investors advised by J.P. Morgan Asset Management. The debt and equity investment company teamed with TIAA-CREF Global Real Estate to provide the joint venture with $648 million in financing for the $1.3 billion acquisition of 500 Boylston and 222 Berkeley Streets, two interconnected office towers totaling 1.3 million square feet in Boston’s coveted Back Bay area.” (Commercial Property Executive)
  8. A&P Sues Bidder of Deal Gone Bad “A&P is suing a real estate company that submitted winning bids for two of its supermarkets in a bankruptcy auction for failing to disclose it made the offer on behalf of an unqualified buyer, among other improprieties. Bidder Lee & Associates also failed to submit proper documentation to acquire the stores, evidently after encountering resistance to its plans from a landlord and union representing store workers, according to evidence filed in the case Tuesday.” (Supermarket News)
  9. Q&A with ICSC Chairman Stephen Leibowitz: What Retailers Can Expect This Holiday Season “As chairmain of ICSC and in his role as the CEO of CBL, one of the country's largest mall REITs, Stephen Lebovitz has his finger on the pulse of retail. Bisnow sat down with him to get his views on REIT spinoffs, interest rates and what the industry can expect from the upcoming holiday sales season.” (Bisnow)
  10. Judge Upholds $55M Settlement Between Malkins, ESB Investors “An appeals court judge on Tuesday ruled upheld a $55 million settlement struck between Anthony Malkin’s Malkin Holdings and former investors in the Empire State Building, a victory for the Malkin family and the highly-contested REIT conversion of King Kong’s favorite skyscraper. The judge upheld the original terms of a 2012 settlement inked in wake of a class action lawsuit by the investors — who claimed Malkin’s Empire State Realty Trust unfairly compensated them.” (The Real Deal)
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