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ATLANTA-In one of the largest area office leases this year, Cingular Wireless is taking the entire 376,000-sf office building on Windward Parkway near the GA 400 in suburban Alpharetta, 30 miles north of Downtown Atlanta.

Cingular and Barry officials couldn’t be reached at GlobeSt.com’s publication deadline to learn lease details. But area brokers familiar with the deal tell GlobeSt.com on condition of anonymity the lease is at least for 10 years with options to renew.

Based on the most recent research from Atlanta-based Richard Bowers & Co., the average asking class A rent in the GA-400 North submarket is $22.14 per sf. That would give the Cingular lease an estimated aggregate value of $8.32 million per year or $83.25 million for 10 years.

Cingular has also purchased an undisclosed amount of land adjacent to the Barry-built building where locally based Holder Properties will be breaking ground shortly on a 68,000-sf data center scheduled for completion in first quarter 2002. Area construction industry estimators tell GlobeSt.com on condition of anonymity the class A data center will probably be built for about $10 million or roughly $150 per sf.

Cingular plans to begin moving employees this fall from the Northpark Town Center at GA 400 and Abernathy Road to the new building that can accommodate 1,500 workers.

The new lease follows a 300,000-sf office contract Cingular signed last year in Glenridge Highlands Two at GA 400 and the Glenridge Connector.

Second-quarter statistics from Richard Bowers & Co. show the 8.97 million-sf, class A GA-400 North submarket has a 15.43% vacancy level with 1.38 million sf of available space. The entire 12.6 million-sf GA-400 North area has a vacancy mark of 16.69%; 2.1 million sf of available space; net absorption of 307,146; and an average asking rent of $20.90 per sf.

Barry initially developed the new Cingular-leased structure for Nortel Networks Inc., the Ottawa, Canada telecom equipment provider currently downsizing and restructuring its assets and operations.

In a prepared statement, Debbie Baker-Oliver, executive director of real estate for Cingular, says “the new office space in Alpharetta will allow us to accommodate 1,500 employees in one location, while reducing operating expense significantly over the short and long term.”

Oliver commended the city of Alpharetta for having been “professional and responsive” in Cingular’s search for office space and land.

In the same statement, Harvey S. Rudy, vice president, Barry Real Estate Cos., says the Cingular lease “provides further evidence of the ongoing strength of the North Fulton office market.”

Cingular is a joint venture between SBC Communications and BellSouth. Cingular serves 21.2 million customers nationwide.

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