SEATTLE—400 University @ Rainier Square, a 10-story 122,000-square-foot class-A office building, has broken ground at the SWcorner of the Rainier Square block at University Street and FourthAvenue, according to local developer Wright Runstad & Companyand partner Intercontinental Real Estate Corporation. The planscall for 110,000 square feet of office space on top of 12,000square feet of street-level restaurant and lounge space.

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Other features include a subgrade mezzanine level, a6,000-square-foot rooftop deck and third-floor terrace. Theproperty has exclusive bike storage, locker rooms with showers anddedicated tenant parking.

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"We are extremely excited to be underway at 400 University,"says Walt Ingram, president and CFO of Wright Runstad &Company. "When complete, 400 University will fulfill an importantvision for Rainier Square, as one-block, one-project and as apre-eminent office, retail and residential destination offering anunbeatable location, proximities, and a full complement of tenantand residential amenities. More importantly, 400 Universityreflects our continued belief in downtown Seattle and the long-term prospects for its economic growth and office demand."

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An underground concourse connects the project to the WashingtonAthletic Club, Seattle Hilton, Union Square and the WashingtonState Convention Center. It is also located one block from theUniversity Street Link light rail station with access to major buslines.

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With its efficient 11,500-square-foot floorplates, 400University offers the benefits of a smaller, secure and more easilycontrolled environment. Office tenants of 400 University @ RainierSquare also will benefit from Rainier Square amenities which willinclude an Equinox fitness club, PCC Urban market and the GrandHall as well as 16,000 square feet of additional outdoor space.

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Intercontinental, which has been an active multifamily investorin Seattle since 2013, looks to build a significant officeportfolio in the market. Intercontinental made its first Seattleoffice investment in December 2019 with the $157 millionacquisition of Roosevelt Commons, a class-A office complex in theUniversity of Washington's Innovation District.

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"The site's ideal location initially attracted us to theopportunity," said Jessica Levin, Intercontinental's seniordirector of acquisitions. "400 University's proximity to publictransportation options and an array of amenities within the RainierSquare development and the immediate neighborhood make the site oneof the top locations in downtown Seattle. Our investment in 400University represents our commitment to Seattle and our belief thatSeattle's dynamic and innovative economy is well positioned forlong-term growth."

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400 University @ Rainier Square increases Intercontinental'sportfolio in the Pacific Northwest to more than 2,000 multifamilyunits and more than 400,000 square feet of commercial officespace.

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"We've been active over the past several years with 2,000 unitssince 2009," Levin tells GlobeSt.com. "Seattle is a multifacetedeconomy with many growth companies driving expansion. Techcompanies will follow those drivers, including quality of lifeattracting talent in a live-work-play environment. For example,Amazon and Microsoft draw employees to the area and spin off intoother companies. We'll continue to evaluate opportunities and arelong-term believers in the market."

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Eastdil Secured led by managing directors Jeffrey Weber andJason Flynn in the firm's San Francisco office arranged andstructured the joint venture partnership. Greg Inglin and DavidAbbott of Colliers International represent the office leasingteam.

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When delivered in July 2021, the NBBJ-designed 400 University @Rainier Square will complete Rainier Square, a 1.2million-square-foot mixed-use project being developed by WrightRunstad in a separate venture. Encompassing an entire city block onthe University of Washington's historic Metropolitan Tract, RainierSquare is being built around the University's iconic 41-storyRainier Tower. The distinctive sloping glass tower designed by NBBJwill include 720,000 square feet of office, more than 80,000 squarefeet of retail, and 191 luxury apartments and amenities on the top18 floors. When completed in late 2020, Rainier Square will be thesecond tallest structure in Seattle.

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The Puget Sound regional office market first quarter results sawvacancy inch up to 6.05%, from 5.87% last quarter, as the regionbraces for what is expected to be a tumultuous next few quarters of2020, according to a report by Kidder Mathews. The first quarterended showing solid net office absorption of 2 million square feetin the region with delivery of five major office projects, boostingthe region's office inventory to just under 211.1 million squarefeet, says the report.

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Lisa Brown

Lisa Brown is an editor for the south and west regions of GlobeSt.com. She has 25-plus years of real estate experience, with a regional PR role at Grubb & Ellis and a national communications position at MMI. Brown also spent 10 years as executive director at NAIOP San Francisco Bay Area chapter, where she led the organization to achieving its first national award honors and recognition on Capitol Hill. She has written extensively on commercial real estate topics and edited numerous pieces on the subject.