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INGLEWOOD, CA-Upside Investments Inc. of Calabasas has acquired the 305,120-sf Crenshaw Imperial Plaza for $12 million, with plans to revitalize the combination retail and office project.

Upside, which specializes in repositioning plays, acquired the property from Crenshaw Imperial Plaza LLC in a sale that closed this week. Sean Baker, president of Upside, says the company sees the purchase as an opportunity to add value to what he describes as an under-utilized asset at the busy intersection of Crenshaw Boulevard and Imperial Highway. He says Upside plans a major redevelopment that will also include cosmetic renovations and additional pad tenants.

Built in 1960 and renovated in 1988 and 2001, the two-story Crenshaw Imperial Plaza occupies a 17.8-acre site on the southeast corner of Crenshaw and Imperial. Its 305,120 sf, which is about 80% occupied, includes 220,291 sf of retail space anchored by Vons and Sav-on, plus a six-story office building of 84,829 sf that is anchored by California Federal Bank. Also contained within the purchase is a 31,050-sf pad for development, located adjacent the office building. Greg Mills from Marcus & Millichap in Encino represented both the buyer and seller in the sales transaction. Upside Investments has awarded the leasing contract for the retail component to Richard Rizika of the South Bay office of CB Richard Ellis Retail Services.

The acquisition of the Crenshaw Imperial Plaza comes following Upside’s purchase of a 22-story Mid-Wilshire office building originally developed in 1963 by J. Paul Getty. As reported previously on GlobeSt.com, Upside is converting the office tower to 260 luxury high-rise apartments with retail on the ground floor. The Crenshaw Imperial property and the Getty building are the latest in a series of repositioning plays for Upside, which owns apartment complexes and shopping centers valued in excess of $100 million located throughout the western United States. The principals of Upside include Baker and Gary Simons, the firm’s CEO, who also own a third-party construction company, Projects West Construction, which specializes in multi-unit residential buildings, commercial retail shell construction and tenant improvements.

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