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HOUSTON-Crescent Real Estate Equities Co. and JPMorgan Fleming Asset Management have purchased the 502,000-sf One BriarLake Plaza in West Houston from Tishman Speyer Properties in a deal that real estate sources say brought close to $75 million.

The New York City-based Tishman Speyer developed the class A office building at 2000 W. Sam Houston Parkway in the in 1999. JPMorgan Fleming will own 70% of the 89%-leased building and the Crescent gets the balance along with the leasing and management contracts.

“This transaction marks our eighth office joint venture for a total of approximately $825 million in value,” says John Goff, Crescent’s CEO. “It is our third office joint venture with JPMorgan Fleming, following the 5 Houston Center development in Downtown Houston and more recently Miami Center in Miami, which was previously wholly owned by Crescent.” Goff, terming both buyers as long term “believers” in the local office market, says BriarLake Plaza was “particularly compelling” because it was acquired at a discount to replacement costs and sits in one of the city’s strongest submarkets, Westchase. As with Crescent’s other JV acquisitions, the buyer isn’t discussing the selling price.

A Crescent spokeswoman says the building was acquired at a 15% to 20% discount replacement cost. The first year’s net operating income exceeds 9.5%, she adds, pointing out the deal was further sweetened with no near-term rollover on the leases. The building’s quoted rent is about $23 per sf.

A veteran office broker in the Westchase submarket, Ralph Tullier of Trammell Crow Co., tells GlobeSt.com that the addition of such “strong institutional ownership” as Crescent and JPMorgan Fleming further solidifies an already strong submarket. According to the Harris County Appraisal District, the building’s 2003 assessment is $56.4 million.

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