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NEW YORK CITY-The on-again, off-again reopening of One Liberty Plaza (originally scheduled for this morning and postponed at the last minute) has managed to overshadow another significant announcement by Brookfield Properties. On Friday, the company completed a $240 million refinancing on one of its major Canadian assets.

Bankers Hall, a 2.6-million twin-tower complex in Calgary, Alberta was purchased by Brookfield last year. At the time, the mixed-use property was roughly one-third vacant. Now, with the property leased up and greatly improved, Brookfield has decided to cash in on its investment.

“When we acquired Bankers Hall it had approximately 450,000 sf of vacant space in it,” Brookfield CFO Steve Douglas tells GlobeSt.com. “We subsequently leased up virtually all of that space. We’ve increased the cash flows of the building and increased the value of the building.”

Douglas says the refinancing will accomplish two goals for Brookfield. First, the company will pay down its construction debt on the property. “Second, we can harvest some of the value that has been created by that leasing initiative,” Douglas says. “We’ll pay down debt and when appropriate acquisitions present themselves we’ll be in a position to take advantage of them.” Bankers Hall comprises twin 50-story office towers sitting above a 7-story office/retail base that integrates the historic Hollinsworth Building and the adjacent 24-story Royal Bank Building.

The deal is the second major refinancing Brookfield has completed this year. In July, the company announced a $165-million first mortgage for another Calgary property, the 1.7 million-sf Fifth Avenue Place. The company simultaneously announced the sale of 50% of the two-building office property to an institutional investor for $275 million.

When the transactions were announced, Brookfield president and chief executive David Arthur said, “The refinancing and sale of a partial interest in Fifth Avenue Place is one step in a series of value-enhancing initiatives which we hope to complete in the next six months in Calgary.”

Earlier this month, Brookfield announced the sale of its last retail property, Bramalea City Centre in Toronto, for $200 million to an institutional investor. According to Arthur, the company’s 2001 property sales and refinancings exceed $1 billion.

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