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SAN FRANCISCO-Bay Area companies have been especially affected by the economic recession but one nonprofit company shows that there is still some hope for the commercial real estate industry.

The Public Policy Institute of California has purchased a San Francisco office building for more than $30 million. The building was previously owned by Los Angeles-based commercial investor Shuwa.

Chief Executive Officer David Lyons says, “The purchase of 500 Washington is a tangible symbol of our involvement in civic life in the Bay Area.”

The nonprofit group, which provides research and study programs on issues relating to the economy, population, government and public finance, signed purchase papers this week for the building located at 500 Washington Street. The institute occupies three of the eight floors in the 100,000-sf building, which was built in 1982.

“This purchase is a sign of PPIC’s commitment to California and to San Francisco as a location,” says Ray Watson, chairman of the board.

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