Downtown Oakland will get new office tower at historic site

New development suggests the East Bay’s largest city is poised for an influx of companies and other organizations.

In addition to building a new tower, the project will renovate the historic former headquarters for the Key System — a privately owned mass-transit system of rail lines and buses that operated through much of the East Bay from 1903 to 1960, when it was sold to the newly formed AC Transit system.

The new tower and old Key System building will be connected.

“Part of what we want to do is bring this historic treasure back to life,” said Melinda Ellis Evers, a managing principal with San Francisco-based Ellis Partners, a developer that has teamed up with Intercontinental Real Estate in a joint venture to build the tower.

The project will take close to two years to build and should be available for tenants to move in by the end of 2019.

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Strong Economic Indicators Present In All Of San Francisco CRE

San Francisco’s commercial real estate market shows many positive signs for growth in 2018.

Multiple CRE products are going up right now, which is relatively uncommon, according to Vanguard Properties Director of Investment Sales Alex Kolovyansky, who spoke during a recent Bisnow event.

Office, industrial residential and hotel are all experiencing up cycles, Kolovyansky said.

“The San Francisco residential market has been growing by leaps and bounds,” he said.

In 2017, 6,500 transactions were completed in the residential market, of which 35% were for homes and 51% were for condos. A very small percentage of the transactions were for investment properties and 2.3% were for apartment buildings. Kolovyansky said 147 old and new apartments traded last year.

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Developers in contract to buy Oakland tower site

Two developers are in contract to buy a tower site next to Oakland’s 19th Street BART station, potentially kickstarting construction.

Danville-based Behring Cos. has an option to buy the land at 1900 Broadway, according to an agreement filed in November. The deal hasn’t closed.

John Herr, executive vice president at Lincoln Property Co., said at a Bisnow event on Wednesday that the company is partnering with Behring on the project. It would be Lincon’s first project in Oakland, and the company would join a wave of new developers that are fueling the city’s biggest development boom in decades.

Read more from San Francisco Business Times

Google Proposes One Million Square Foot Project in Sunnyvale for 4,500 Employees

The second half of 2017 brought some much-desired attention to San Jose, the self-proclaimed capital of Silicon Valley. It all started when Trammell Crow announced that its Diridon Station project was tied to Google, and the subsequent negotiations the Mountain View tech giant started with San Jose’s elders to expand even further in the city. A slew of activity emerged in the city from hotels to office buildings to apartment complexes trading hands and institutional investors really zeroing in on the opportunity this could bring. The 86-acre, 4 million square foot approval Apple received from the city of San Jose in 2016 was not even mentioned in the news—the excitement seemed to be all about Google.

Yet Google’s ambitions are much broader than just one city. In late December, Google initiated plans with the city of Sunnyvale for a roughly 1.042 million square foot office project on approximately 40.5 acres of land it owns in the Moffett Park district. The ten parcels that Google owns are bounded by Caribbean Drive, Mathilda Avenue, Bordeaux Drive and Borregas Avenue. There are thirteen single story buildings on the property today totaling 801,670 square feet, and they include a combination of warehouse, light manufacturing, R&D and office uses, according to a letter submitted to the city by Google’s Senior Director of Design and Construction, Joe Van Belleghem.

Read more from The Registry

Downtown Corporate Campuses are Expanding into the Suburbs

One of the most important development trends in recent years has been the push to redevelop, reenergize and revitalize downtown districts in cities and towns across the country. Aligned with a demographic wave (led by millennials, empty nesters and active seniors) displaying a renewed appreciation for and attraction to the live/work/play dynamism that dense, mixed-use urban centers can provide, developers have become more aggressive and more adept at transforming underutilized urban neighborhoods in vital and energized centers of commercial and social activity.

Read more from National Real Estate Investor

Here are the Bay Area’s 10 biggest building sales of 2017

San Francisco and the rest of the Bay Area saw another banner year for building sales in 2017. Giant foreign investors, pension funds and private equity firms bought towers in the heart of downtown San Francisco and more suburban areas for record prices.

The big deals weren’t just limited to tech offices and Oakland’s investment market remains hot.

Read more from San Francisco Business Times

Silicon Valley’s largest commercial real estate leases of 2017 (so far)

So far, 2017 hasn’t been a feverish year for commercial real estate leasing, especially compared to busy 2015 and 2016, but analysts agree that it has been a good, stable year with plenty of important moves.

Among them are WeWork’s largest ever lease that just happens to be in a brand-new development in Mountain View. Meanwhile, Menlo Park-based social media giant Facebook is rapidly growing, inking multiple massive new leases in the area, and Amazon continued to spread its reach throughout the Valley with a renewed focus on the South Bay.

Read more from Silicon Valley Business Times

Tenant Buyouts of up to $310,000 in San Francisco since 2015

Since March of 2015, when San Francisco started regulating “buyout agreements” between landlords and their tenants, a total of 772 buyout agreements have been inked and reported.

While the highest reported buyout totaled $310,000 for three tenants in the Mission back in July of 2015, the highest reported buyout for a single tenant was $250,000 for a unit on 21st Avenue in the Lake District last year.

And while the total number of reported buyouts has dropped from 319 in 2016 to 258 in 2017, as of November this year, the average buyout amount has increased from $36,839 per building in 2016 to $42,806 in 2017; or on a per tenant basis, from $22,698 in 2015, to $23,504 last year and $27,495 in 2017 to date.

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Iconic Bank of Italy building is bought, signaling rising downtown San Jose interest

The Bank of Italy office building, deemed by experts to be downtown San Jose’s most iconic tower, has been bought by investors based in Menlo Park and Manhattan, according to public records that indicate WeWork has taken an ownership interest in the high rise.

Through several transactions in December and October, two investment groups that are working together paid $33.8 million for the historic 90-year-old office tower, along with an adjacent parking lot and a building that contains Lido’s nightclub.

“We are a local group of investors who care deeply about an iconic building that was in need of repair,” Gary Dillabough, a realty investor and venture capitalist who is leading the efforts to revive the downtown San Jose icon, told this news organization Monday. “Our capital partner is back east.”

Read more from The Mercury News

Uber sells Uptown Station HQ to Oakland firm

Uber announced in August that it was putting Uptown Station—the new mixed-use development right downtown in the onetime Sears building on Broadway that only recently shed the white plastic cocoon that enshrouded it during rehab—up for sale without ever moving a single employee into its planned headquarters.

But it didn’t take long for an interested buyer to start making eyes at the circa 1929 Beaux-Arts building.

Back in October, the San Francisco Business Times reported that the Oakland-base investment firm CIM Group planned to buy the whole 356,000-square-foot building for $175 million.

As Tuesday morning, CIM announced the sale via press release. The announcement doesn’t include the sale price, and spokesperson Karen Diehl tells Curbed SF “CIM never discusses financial arrangements.”

Uber previous paid $123.5 million for the place, putting millions more into the rehab.

Read more from Curbed SF