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MT. LAUREL, NJ-The Lightstone Group, based in Lakewood, NJ, has acquired Larchmont Commons Shopping Center here. Evergreen Mount Laurel Partners LP, a local group, was the seller of the asset. Details of the sale, including sale price were not disclosed. Financing was provided by First Union Bank.

Located in Burlington County in Southern New Jersey, Larchmont Commons has a total of 125,000 sf of grocery-anchored retail space and an office center. The one-story strip center and two-story office complex have a combined 27 rental units, and the property is currently 90% occupied with one office suite available.

Larchmont Commons’ tenant roster includes a SuperValu supermarket, an Eckerd Drugstore, Radio Shack, Kiddie Academy, Robert’s Hallmark, Hollywood Tans, Nova Care Rehabilitation, Artex International and H&R Block. The asset recently underway substantial capital improvements, including updated landscaping and site lighting.

“In both good markets and bad, retail real estate remains a smart investment,” says David Lichtenstein, chairman and principal of The Lightstone Group. “The market fundamentals may change slightly from quarter to quarter and from year to year, but our company’s long-term view is that an intelligent retail acquisition makes sense in all market conditions.

“Obviously, First Union Bank agrees,” Lichtenstein continues. “Talk about time being of the essence, they reviewed his investment opportunity and brought us to close in less than a week.”

The acquisition also closes out an aggressive buying year for Lightstone, which was founded in 1988. Most recently, the company bought the 446,327-sf Prime Outlets, a retail center in Barceloneta, Puerto Rico (see earlier story). The company’s portfolio now totals some 15,000 apartments either owned or managed, as well as 8.5 million sf of office, industrial and retail properties in 16 states and Puerto Rico. Besides its Lakewood, NJ headquarters, the company maintains offices in Maryland, Virginia and California.

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