FORT LAUDERDALE, FL-Colonial Properties Trust, a national diversified REIT, has purchased Boulevard Square, a 221,000-sf shopping center here. The acquisition is the company’s fourth South Florida shopping center purchase in a little more than a month.The sales price was not disclosed; however, the center, at Pines Boulevard and Hiatus Road in Pembroke Pines, was sold to Cole Cos. of Arizona in late 2002 for $34.6 million. Boulevard Square is adjacent to Pines Plaza, renamed Colonial Shoppes Pines Plaza, which the Colonial Properties also recently bought.Office Max, Ross Dress for Less, the Sports Authority and TJ Maxx anchor the center, which Colonial Properties is renaming Colonial Promenade Boulevard Square. “The addition of this property to our South Florida portfolio is an extension of the recent acquisitions in Fort Lauderdale and Fort Myers,” Thomas H. Lowder, chairman and CEO of Colonial Properties Trust, says in a statement. “Each of these properties is located in high-traffic areas with solid demographics. The company will continue to seek opportunities to increase its retail exposure in these types of high-growth Sunbelt markets.” Executives at Colonial Properties Trust could not be reached for comments.In August, Colonial Properties Trust purchased three retail properties from Ross Matz Investments Inc. for a total gross price of about $81.7 million. They were Deerfield Mall, a 371,000-sf outdoor mall in Deerfield Beach; College Parkway Center, an 82,000-sf center that Office Depot anchors in Fort Myers; and Pines Plaza, a 68,000-sf center in Pembroke Pines whose tenants include Office Depot, Sound Advice and CompUSA.The three recent acquisitions from Ross Matz Investments were the company’s first in South Florida; however, Linda Geiss, vice president of marketing for Colonial Properties Trust, notes the company’s continued strong interest in that market. “It’s demographically very strong, and as you know, demographic growth and demographic viability” are key in our purchase decisions.

Through its subsidiaries, publicly traded Colonial Properties Trust, based in Birmingham, AL, owns office, retail and multifamily properties in eight other states. The REIT has a total market capitalization of $3.4 billion, and it manages or leases 22,400 apartment units, 6.8 million sf of office space and 15.7 million sf of retail space.

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