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ANTHEM, AZ-A California investor has paid $5.7 million for retail properties in Anthem and Peoria, picking up higher-than-average rents and proximity to high-growth residential communities.

Palo Rojo Investments of Melville put up $3.1 million for the 10,584-sf Anthem Village Center at 2411 W. Anthem Way and $2.4 million for a 6,612-sf structure in the six-building Fletcher Heights Plaza at 8275 W. Lake Pleasant Parkway. “The seller called us and said if you have any buyers, this is what we’re working on. We happened to have a buyer with an exchange,” Patrick Dempsey, a principal with Lee & Associates Arizona in Phoenix, tells GlobeSt.com. The seller is Evergreen Development Co. of Glendale, CA, one of the largest merchant builders for Walgreens in the US.

In addition to exchange funds, the buyer obtained a five-year, $2.5-million acquisition loan for Anthem Village Center and a $1.8-million loan for Fletcher Heights building. Midfirst Bank of Oklahoma City provided the financing.

Completed earlier this year at the corner of Anthem Way and Daisy Mountain Drive, Anthem Village Center was 90% occupied with tenants under negotiations to fill the remaining space at the time of closing. The center abuts a new Walgreens, which was not included in the deal.

Anthem Village Center, one of only a handful of retail developments in Anthem, has $26-per-sf rents on average. Tenants include Farmers Insurance, Barro’s Pizza and a dentist. “Rents are very healthy in this area, higher than you’ll find in other parts of Phoenix. There’s an affluent community and not a lot of retail in this area. But there is a growing residential population,” Dempsey says.

Fletcher Heights Plaza, also completed this year, has 40,000 sf of retail at the corner of Lake Pleasant Parkway and Fletcher Way. With rent at $32.50 per sf, the building was fully leased to New York Subs, LA Nails and a combination Baskin Robbins/Dunkin’ Donuts shop. Dempsey, Jan Fincham and Kevin Kopp, also with Lee & Associates, represented both parties in the transactions.

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