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DALLAS-Commercial Developments International/East is back in town as a building owner after a four-year hiatus. The New York City-based group has spun an on-off deal into a closing, paying “north of $200 per sf” for the 360,000-sf 2100 McKinney in the Uptown/Turtle Creek submarket.

“We want to get back into the investment mode,” Alan T. Kessler, CDI’s president and CEO, tells GlobeSt.com. “It doesn’t get any better than this.”

The buy is a fully occupied, 18-story landmark built by Trammell Crow. Kessler says the Trammell Crow name, one that he respects as a developer, was one of the reasons he pushed so hard to acquire the deed. The trophy buy also came with a corps of “high-credit tenants on long-term leases” and positioning in one of Dallas’ most prestigious submarkets.

Kessler says he beat four others jockeying for the 2100 McKinney Ave. property, which went on the market in early summer. Those four, whose names aren’t being made public, “all called after we had it under contract and wanted to joint venture,” he confides, disclosing CDI spent “north of $200 per sf” to win the face-off for the brick and limestone-clad tower with six-level parking garage.

Crow Holdings and Westbrook Partners are the sellers of the landmark, which opened its doors just three years ago. Gary Carr and Russell Ingrum, a CB Richard Ellis Inc. powerhouse team in Dallas, brokered the sale. A Holliday Fenoglio Fowler LP team–Dan Bryson in Dallas and Joseph Morningstar in New York City–arranged $64.35 million in financing for the purchase.

Kessler says CDI, a subsidiary of Kajima USA, is actively scouring the Dallas market, as well as other metros, for class A properties. In 1998, CDI exited Texas, selling premier office buildings in Houston and Dallas.

“We’re returning,” Kessler emphasizes. The 2100 McKinney is the first purchase from a $600-million capital pool to fund a US portfolio expansion over the next three years. CDI, a developer and investor in high-end properties, is part of Kajima Corp. of Japan, one of the largest development and construction companies in the world.

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