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FT. WORTH-Trammell Crow Co. is scrapping plans to buy the tornado-damaged Bank One Tower from Loutex Fort Worth LP, a decision made late Friday after months of due diligence on what had looked like a go.

Loutex Fort Worth, the property owner, will immediately start talks with several other interested parties, Bill Lawrence, spokesman for TC Dallas/Fort Worth Investment and Development, told GlobeSt.com. “There is considerable interest from other groups,” he says.

“We are very disappointed that we were unable to purchase the building,” Jim Eagle, TCC-Ft. Worth, says in a prepared statement. “We would like to have been able to restore the building to a class-A facility.” A reason for the decision is not being given, but Eagle did say that Loutex had shown “excellent cooperation” during the months of talks.

The Aug. 31 sales pact had hinged upon due diligence findings, which have repeatedly stalled the acquisition’s final signing. A closing had been predicted for Dec. 15.

Loutex Fort Worth had placed the 35-story, 487,000-sf tower on the market in late August after determining it would be too costly to repair it. The Bank One Tower is positioned in the heart of the city’s CBD and includes a 134,000-sf supplemental structure and six-story parking garage. Trammell Crow had been Loutex’s property manager for the Throckmorton St. holding.

Taking the structure back to its pre-tornado state is projected to have cost well in excess of $35 million, the appraised value of the entire property. The March 28 tornado had shattered 3,200 of the tower’s 3,400 large glass windows and wreaked havoc with the HVAC system in that damaging molds had been detected. The structure had stood idle during cleanup and basic shoring of the city’s CBD, which had sustained an estimated $500 million in damages. Loutex had blamed its decision to sell the building and abandon rehabilitation work on the costly, but necessary rehab of the tower’s HVAC system.The tower had been 93% leased at the time the tornado ripped through the region, leveling buildings, tearing off roofs and shattering skyscraper windows in the downtown. The adjacent building and parking garage had not sustained major damage by the tornado.

Loutex had acquired the Bank One tower, valued at $30 million, in an 11-building portfolio buy in 1998 from Bank One Corp. The glass octagon tower, which opened in 1974 as the Fort Worth National Bank, is the design of Atlanta architect John Portman.

If it had gone through, the acquisition would have marked TCC’s second CBD purchase in Ft. Worth. Earlier this year, the company had bought the Neil P. Anderson Building.

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