The Biz Buzz

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Category: Commercial Real Estate

June
5th

Abitibi paper mill site in Steilacoom sold

The former site of an Abitibi-Consolidated paper mill on Chambers Creek in Steilacoom is in new hands.

The former industrial site, now missing most of the machinery and buildings used to create newsprint for some 80 years, sold last month to a development group based in Tacoma.

The paper mill, which had been owned by several forest products companies during its life, halted production in 2000. More than 170 workers were laid off.

Falls Development Group  is the site’s new owner, said Steilacoom Town Administrator Paul Loveless.  Loveless said he met with the new owner, George Heidgerken, and his planner,

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June
4th

Investor with ties to Bellevue developer buys downtown Tacoma’s Columbia Bank Building

An investor with close ties to Bellevue mega-developer F. Kemper Freeman Jr. has bought one of downtown Tacoma’s historic retail cornerstones, the Columbia Bank Building.

But Howard McQuaid said his purchase of the 88,000-square-foot former department store at 1102 Broadway Plaza doesn’t indicate a shift in Kemper Development Co.’s Bellevue focus.

“It was a personal investment,” said McQuaid Tuesday. “There is no connection with Kemper Development Co.”

McQuaid is vice president of leasing and development for Kemper Development and Kemper Freeman’s son-in-law. Kemper Development created the Bellevue Square shopping center and the connected Lincoln Square and Bellevue Place mixed-use developments.

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May
28th

H&M coming to The Outlet Collection Seattle, nee the Auburn Supermall

As part of its $35 million makeover, The Outlet Collection Seattle, the donut-shaped mall at the intersection of highways 167 and 18 in Auburn,  formerly known as the Supermall, is adding Swedish fashion retailer H&M to its repertoire of stores.

H&M, Hennes & Mauritz, will open the new 23,000-square-foot store this fall.  H&M, which opened its first store in the U.S. 13 years ago on New York’s Fifth Avenue, has 2,800 stores in 49 countries.

The Outlet Collection store will include fashions for women, men, young men and young women with separate “stores within a store” for accessories, the retailer

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May
28th

California-based apartment developer buys Tacoma’s Chelsea Heights and might soon own Albers Mill

A California-based apartment developer has bought Chelsea Heights in Tacoma, has an offer in on Albers Mill and its eyes on other properties in the city.

ColRich, headquartered in San Diego, bought Chelsea Heights for $18.8 million earlier this month, two years after a Seattle-based company snapped it up for $15 million after a bank foreclosed on the Prium subsidiary that owned it. (You remember Prium, right?)

Jim Jensen of Hendricks-Berkadia, who brokered the deal, told me this afternoon that news of State Farm’s plans to expand to downtown Tacoma helped seal the deal for ColRich.

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May
28th

Foss Waterway Development Authority elevates interim director to permanent status

The municipal authority that promotes and governs redevelopment of downtown Tacoma’s Thea Foss Waterway has named Su Dowie as its executive director.

Dowie had served as the authority’s interim director for three and a half years since executive director Don Meyer retired. Dowie joined the authority in 1998. Before her appointment as interim director, she was the authority’s second-in-command.

The authority delayed naming a permanent replacement for Meyer, now a Port of Tacoma commissioner, because the authority’s finances were hit hard by the recession.  Development activity along the formerly industrial waterway ground to a halt in 2008, impacting the authority’s

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May
27th

Atlanta-based moving and storage company opens Northwest base in Tacoma

Atlanta-based Atlantic Relocations Systems has expanded its geographic reach to the Pacific Northwest with the opening of a Tacoma location.

Atlantic, an agent for Atlas Van Lines, now has 13 branch locations stretching from Tacoma to Florida. The company purchased a warehouse formerly owned by Bekins Moving and Storage Inc. at 2121 S. 80th St.

“We’ve seen a great deal of growth in the last 12 months,” said Jon Schroeder, president and  Atlantic Relocation Systems chief operating officer. “There has been a resurgence of a couple of segments of our business, including household goods moves and residential services. There is

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May
24th

Major office deal announced for State Farm in Arizona

Today in Tempe, Ariz., city officials announced that two private developers will build a $600 million mixed-use complex that will be anchored by State Farm.

According to a report in the East Valley Tribune’s online edition, Ryan Companies US, Inc. and Sunbelt Holdings will develop a site owned by Arizone State University near Tempe Town Lake. The deal is subject to City Council approval of development agreement details in the coming month. (I wonder what the chances are of that agreement not getting approved.)

More details from the Tribune:

The Marina Heights project in Tempe will be the largest office

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May
23rd

Builder to begin constructing 143 single-family homes in Eastside’s New Salishan

The Tacoma Housing Authority took a major step this week in advancing  the rebirth of the former Salishan public housing project on Tacoma’s Eastside as a major mixed-use housing development.

The authority sold 143 lots in Area Three  of the former World War II housing development to the nation’s largest homebuilder,  D.R. Horton.  Horton is expected to begin building single-family homes on the lots this summer.

Those homes, most of them with three or four bedrooms, are likely to be priced at market rates between $180,000 and $250,000, said Michael Mirra, the housing authority’s executive director. A few with views

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