By Jon Peterson
Meriwether Partners, with offices in Seattle and Portland, has acquired the 62,500 square foot Russell Hall mixed-use property in the University District in Seattle for $30.7 million, or roughly $491 a square foot, according to sources familiar with the transaction.
The buyer did not respond to several phone calls seeking comment for this story. It acquired the property without the services of a listing agent.
The seller of the property is Seattle-based Unico Properties. It was the developer and original owner of the property. It had sold the asset with the assistance of the CBRE office in Seattle. The listing agent declined to comment when contacted for this story.
“As part of a long-term ground lease with the Wesley Foundation, we were pleased to develop and open Russell Hall in 2009 by transforming a surface parking lot into office and retail spaces, apartments and parking, thereby contributing vitality to this important urban neighborhood. Russell Hall has served, and will continue to serve, as a high-quality asset in the University District and as a professional entry for the University of Washington. With the Mayor of Seattle’s commitment to the neighborhood as a residential center, the light rail coming to the area, and the expected growth in the U District over the next 20 years, Unico is proud to have been there at the beginning,” said Andrew Cox, vice president and regional director for Unico Properties.
The cap rate on the transaction was in the 6 percent range, as stated by sources aware of the transaction. This return is based on the current rent being produced by the property.
This property is currently viewed as a boutique core asset. The asset is now fully leased. A main tenant in the office space is the National Bureau of Asian Research as well as the University of Washington. There will be a chance to add some value to the property, since the rents in the office portion of the property are at least 10 percent below market. The retail part of the property has M.O.D. Super Fast Pizza and Neo Café as tenants.