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ST. PETERSBURG, FL-Hallmark Development Co. of Clearwater has latched on to a prime office development site in this city’s hot Feathersound/Gateway submarket with the acquisition of the 46,000-sf Roosevelt Lakes building and a total 9.2 acres for $5 million. Locally based Industries Training Corp. was the seller. The deal took only four months to do.

Colliers Arnold broker John F. Gerlach tells GlobeSt.com his challenge in marketing the property was bringing the building’s occupancy up to a level that would attract potential investors. He finally got it up to 96.7%.

“The seller’s goal was to reduce their occupied square footage and sell with a leaseback,” Gerlach tells GlobeSt.com. “(But) this would leave considerable vacant square footage in the building. During the marketing, however, a tenant was found to occupy the vacant space and this completed an investment package attracting investors.”

Gerlach handled the deal himself. “As a result of the Colliers Arnold marketing program, the ultimate buyer was contacted directly by me. Although I made the contact directly, my agency relationship remained with the seller.”

The broker calls the Feathersound/Gateway submarket “one of the strongest office markets in the Tampa Bay area.” Roosevelt Lakes was built in 1985 and upgraded in 1994. Nine tenants occupied the building at closing. The average asking rent range is $15 to $16 per sf.

Roosevelt Lakes sits on a 4.2-acre pad at 12425 – 28th St. North. An adjoining five-acre parcel also came with the deal. Gerlach says Hallmark hasn’t decided what it will build on that site. “The market will play a significant role in what is ultimately developed,” he says.

Based on the total 9.2 acres alone, Hallmark paid about $543,478 per acre, or $12.48 per sf. But Gerlach says Hallmark allocated $3.73 million for the building and $1.27 million for the vacant land. That distribution equates to $130,435 per acre, or $2.99 per sf, for the land. The building’s value, according to the buyer, comes in at $81.08 per sf.

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