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PORTLAND-Piper Jaffray is relocating to the 31st floor of Unico-US Bancorp Tower in Downtown Portland. The investment advisory subsidiary of US Bancorp has signed on for 18,083 sf in a 10-year deal with a gross value of around $4.5 million.

One floor above Pacific Coast Restaurants’ new-concept Portland City Grill, the 31st floor was originally the home of the top-level US Bank executives, who used to walk down a back stairwell to the previous restaurant, Atwater’s. Atwater’s was said to be heavily subsidized by the bank before closing its doors early last year, several months after Seattle-based Unico Properties acquired the building from US Bancorp, which maintains a long-term, 100,000-sf leasehold in the office tower’s lower floors that is currently being marketed for sublease.

The Piper Jaffray lease was done directly with Unico Properties. Those involved in the deal declined comment on the details, but other local real estate sources put the average annual full service rate over the life of the lease in the mid-$20s per sf. If the deal was done at an average rate of $26, the gross value of the lease would be about $4.7 million. Assuming a standard tenant-improvement allowance of about $25 per sf, Unico would be putting up about $400,000 to help build out the space, and Piper Jaffray will likely put in at least that much itself to achieve its desired finish.

The completion/move-in date for Piper Jaffray’s new space is the first quarter of 2003, according to Mark Fraser of Colliers International, who has the leasing assignment for the building. The Piper Jaffray lease brings the 1.075-million-sf Unico-US Bancorp Tower to 92% leased.

Piper Jaffray, who was represented by Jeff Falconer of Trammell Crow Co., will be relocating from a similar-sized space at One Main Place, a six-story, 314,614-sf office building across from Waterfront Park that is owned by the Los Angeles Fire and Police Pension Fund and managed by Lowe Enterprises. Fraser tells GlobeSt.com that the office tower’s new restaurant and 360-degree views were two of the reasons Piper Jaffray liked the space.

A year ago, when the law firm Miller Nash renewed its lease for the 33rd through 36th floors in the building, firm partner Jonathon Goodling specifically cited Unico’s decision to replace Atwater’s. “In some ways that was an important consideration,” Goodling told GlobeSt.com. “It’s a nice amenity to have in a building, and the fact that Unico went out and found someone to operate it instead of converting it to office as had been rumored showed us a commitment, an understanding as to what it takes to make a successful office tower.”

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