The 26 office properties and 11 retail assets are located inAlabama, Florida, Georgia and Houston. Wachovia Capital Markets LLCwas the financial adviser for both transactions, which are expectedto close this quarter. The office package is 93.7% leased; theretail, 95.1%.

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Colonial Properties' senior vice president Jerry A. Brewer saysthe REIT will maintain full control only over a couplenon-multifamily assets, including Colonial Brookwood Village at 780Brookwood Village in Birmingham. "We're keeping that because it'spart of our mixed-use project," he tells GlobeSt.com, adding theplan is to focus on mixed-use projects going forward. "They're agreat way to 'densify' certain pieces of property."

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Colonial Properties has been pushing a plan to sell office andretail since October 2006. Brewersays the team believes that multifamily investment will be its bestgrowth vehicle for the next five to 10 years. He says Colonial'soffice and retail developments in the pipeline and coming out ofthe ground also will be moved into joint ventures or soldoutright.

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If both deals close as planned with the New York City-basedgroups, Colonial Properties projects common shareholders willreceive a special dividend of nearly $10.75 per share pendingapproval by the board of trustees. A fund advised by DRA Advisorsis paying $1.13 billion for the class A office piece, getting 6.9million sf and a going-in cap rate of 6.9% based on the trailing12-month net NOI. Och-Ziff's 2.7-million-sf retail piece, valued at$360 million, carries a 6.6% cap rate based on the trailing12-month NOI.

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Meanwhile, the REIT is actively marketing another 13 retailassets, totaling three million sf in malls and grocery-anchoredcenters. It's projected that the outright retail sales will reel inabout $265 million. To date this year, Colonial has sold 300,000 sfin three retail properties for $33.1 million. When the dust clears,75% to 80% of Colonial's NOI will be derived from its multifamilyoperation versus the current 50%, Weston Andress, president andCFO, says in a press release.

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