WESTLAKE VILLAGE, CA-The locally based Selleck Development Grouphas acquired a 21.5-acre foreclosed property at 30800 Russell RanchRd. that is the last remaining development site in WestlakeVillage, according to Lee & Associates. President Mike Tingusof Lee & Associates-LA North/Ventura Inc., who represented boththe buyer and seller Bank of America, along with Lee’s GrantFulkerson, says that Selleck's was the winning bid among numerousoffers, many of which were contingent on the receipt of newentitlements from the city of Westlake Village.

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Tingus explains that the site was previously owned by Opus Westand was slated for 450,000 square feet of office space, but theentitlements for that proposal have expired. Selleck chose to moveahead with the acquisition without entitlements and plans to drafta new proposal for the site, which fronts the Ventura (101)Freeway.

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“Obviously there are challenges that go with acquiring land thatis not entitled,” said Dan Selleck, president and owner of SelleckDevelopment Group, “but we live in the area and have done businesswith this community for over 20 years, so we are very confidentthat we can come up with a development plan that the city andcommunity will embrace.” Selleck plans to begin gathering inputfrom city officials and the community shortly. Once a developmentplan is drafted, he expects to present it to the community foradditional input.

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Tingus described bidder interest in the site as "unusuallyhigh,” even in light of some encouraging signs in the real estatemarket in recent months. He points out that real estate financinghas accelerated in recent months and deal flow is on the rise,although it’s expected to take several more years before therecovery is in full swing.

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Selleck believes that the Russell Ranch Road project, which willlikely come to market over the next two or three years, willparallel the economic recovery. The Plant, a 100-acre mixed-useretail and industrial complex in Panorama City that Selleckdeveloped in the mid-90s, also came to market as the last recessionwas abating. The site had been the location for a General Motorsfactory that was shuttered late in the 1980s taking many jobs withit, and the Plant, which created 2,500 jobs, was largely creditedwith helping to revitalize the area.

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“Westlake Village’s economy is far healthier than was PanoramaCity in the mid-90s, but the fact is that this site on RussellRanch Road has not been productive for more than 10 years, and whenwe are able to put it to work, we will also be able to put morepeople to work,” Tingus said.

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