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ARLINGTON, VA-Century Center–a two-building office and retail complex in the bustling Washington, DC submarket known as Crystal City–has just been sold. Lowe Enterprises Investment Management and its affiliate, Lowe Enterprises Real Estate Group, acquired the 600,000-sf property from Crystal Partners LP and RB Hayes Partners LP. The parties involved are remaining hush about the financial terms of the deal, but the purchase price is rumored to have been in the neighborhood of $120 million.

Developed in 1973, the 12-story Century Center towers boast a prime location linked to a Metro station in a burgeoning corridor of Crystal City. Century Center 1 carries the address of 2450 Crystal Dr. and is the larger of the two buildings with 326,000 sf of office space atop 40,000 sf of retail. Century Center 2 sits at 2461 Clark St. and features 195,000 sf of office space and 30,000 sf in retail offerings. As much as the property has to offer, the new owners will enhance Century Center’s attributes via a vast renovation and repositioning program.

In addition to interior upgrades, Lowe plans to redesign the first floor and ground-level retail areas–adding 16,000 sf–to complement new and upcoming neighboring retail developments along Crystal Drive. With regard to the office portion, LEREG senior vice president Jim Darcey tells GlobeSt.com, “We’re focused on being a responsive landlord on the leasing side, and working with Cushman & Wakefield as landlord representatives; it’s 60% leased, so we need to stabilize the office building occupancy.”

Once the property has been repositioned and leased-up, and when the market timing is right, Lowe will sell Crystal Center, Darcey tells GlobeSt.com. In the meantime, however, Lowe will keep its eyes open for other redevelopment endeavors. “We are continuing our focus on value-added opportunities in DC and along the East Coast, along the lines of Century Center and the Air Rights Center in Bethesda.” Lowe acquired the Air Rights Center for a client in 1997, redeveloped it, and sold it for a hefty profit in 2002.

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