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IRVING, TX-CarrAmerica Realty Corp., positioning itself for a 1031 Exchange, banked $121 million in cash from the sale of three fully leased office buildings in Dallas-Fort Worth, GlobeSt.com has learned. The transaction is the largest ticket paid to date this year for office product in North Texas.

Atlanta-based Wells REIT got the deeds, sans debt, to 604,234 sf of class A office product leased for the next 8 1/2 years to Nokia Inc. The Washington, DC seller and developer of the office building trio, in return, reinvested the proceeds into buying five office buildings in Virginia for a high-ticket 1031 trade.

The Dallas-Fort Worth trio sits on 19 acres in tony Las Colinas. A fourth building, totaling 293,000 sf, on 11 acres in the Nokia campus is owned by iStar Financial Inc. of New York City. Wells REIT’s David Steinwedell, chief investment officer, tells GlobeSt.com that the focus was acquiring the CarrAmerica portfolio and not the entire campus.

To date this year, Wells REIT has spent almost $600 million nationwide on acquisitions and has “north of $1 billion” set aside to continue an aggressive 2002 buying spree. Steinwedell, like others in the business, is keeping the details to himself, but did say a couple more deals will close by month’s end and another in September.

The Nokia package consists of a 152,000-sf building at 6011 Connection Dr.; 223,000 sf at 6021 Connection Dr.; and 228,000 sf at 6031 Connection Dr. The latter was built in 2000 and the others in 1999. The buildings were on the market five weeks and under negotiations for 90 days.

Andrew Levy and Jeff Stone, both of Dallas-based Holliday Fenoglio Fowler LP, negotiated the sale. “It was a very smooth deal. Things went along like clockwork,” Steinwedell says.

CarrAmerica’s William Vanderstraaten tells GlobeSt.com that the timing was simply right “for achieving the best valuation from the buildings.”As for the interest in the properties, it was “more than we expected,” he added. The active bidding wasn’t all due to the creditworthy tenant or the lease duration. The property’s positioning at the intersection of Texas 114 and relatively new Texas 161 warrants its share of credit for the selling price.

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