HOUSTON-The jury is still out on what the new owner of 1.3 million sf of class A office space is planning for the Houston CBD, but one source close to the deal says the $55.5 million or $45 per sf price tag was “very rich pricing.”

Dr. Antonio Pacifico, a local cardiologist who leads the Texas Arrhythmia Institute, put together the investment group that bought Enron’s shuttered headquarters at 1400 Smith St. Pacifico didn’t return telephone calls by publication time for comment on the acquisition.

A source close to the deal tells GlobeSt.com that $45 per sf was “very rich pricing” for an empty building in the midst of an economic downtown and one with no parking facility to call its own. The source puts the cost of the parking lease, which has less than 15 years left on the term, at more than $3.5 million per year–a fee that must be paid to owner Trizec Properties Inc. regardless of the number of tenants in the building.

Richard Rudd with the Houston office of Granite Partners handled the sale on behalf of Enron. He says the building was very widely marketed and believes the “pricing reflects the market.” He wouldn’t comment on the inner workings of yesterday’s negotiations, but did say the auction was done by noon. For previous story, click here.

The highest price paid for an office tower in town was $167 per sf, which was shelled out three years ago by a Houston-based limited partnership for 1100 Louisiana. A year ago, Intell Management & Investment Co. of New York City paid about $85 per sf for 1500 Louisiana, formerly Enron Center South.

Tomorrow, attorneys for the seller and Harris County Appraisal District will face off in court over an objection filed to recoup unpaid taxes from the sale of Enron Center South. If the issue is resolved, Pacifico’s group is poised to close the 1400 Smith St. purchase within weeks.

Still, some Houston market watchers are just happy to be moving forward. “The purchase will help downtown by putting ownership in the hands of a single party that can take action,” says Laura Van Ness, business development director with Central Houston Inc.

Richard Zigler, director of research for O’Connor & Associates in Houston, says the news is positive. After several years of anticipation, “the situation is getting resolved,” he stresses.

Want to continue reading?
Become a Free ALM Digital Reader.

Once you are an ALM digital member, you’ll receive:

  • Unlimited access to GlobeSt and other free ALM publications
  • Access to 15 years of GlobeSt archives
  • Your choice of GlobeSt digital newsletters and over 70 others from popular sister publications
  • 1 free article* every 30 days across the ALM subscription network
  • Exclusive discounts on ALM events and publications

*May exclude premium content
Already have an account?


© 2024 ALM Global, LLC, All Rights Reserved. Request academic re-use from www.copyright.com. All other uses, submit a request to [email protected]. For more information visit Asset & Logo Licensing.

Dig Deeper


Join GlobeSt

Don't miss crucial news and insights you need to make informed commercial real estate decisions. Join GlobeSt.com now!

  • Free unlimited access to GlobeSt.com's trusted and independent team of experts who provide commercial real estate owners, investors, developers, brokers and finance professionals with comprehensive coverage, analysis and best practices necessary to innovate and build business.
  • Exclusive discounts on ALM and GlobeSt events.
  • Access to other award-winning ALM websites including ThinkAdvisor.com and Law.com.

Already have an account? Sign In Now
Join GlobeSt

Copyright © 2024 ALM Global, LLC. All Rights Reserved.