ATLANTA-Overlook III, a 23-story, 437,000-sf office building at 2859 Paces Ferry Rd., was 66% occupied when the Illinois Teachers Retirement System bought the property in September for $56.5 million from a partnership of Houston-based Hines and Sacramento-based CalPers. Today the structure is 74% leased, thanks to a 16,546-sf lease signed by NationsBuilders Insurance Services of Palm Desert, CA.

Officials at Lincoln Property Co., which represents the Illinois pension fund, did not respond to queries on the leasing details. However, area brokers familiar with the Northwest/Vinings submarket tell the lease was probably for a minimum 10 years at an estimated effective rent of $20 per sf. That would make the estimated aggregate value of the lease $3.3 million.

NationsBuilders is moving its corporate headquarters to Atlanta but plans to maintain a West Coast office in California, according to Jim Leach, executive vice president of NationsBuilders. “We chose to relocate our corporate headquarters to Atlanta due to its business-friendly environment and status as one of the country’s key transportation hubs,” Leach says.

Overlook III, designed by locally based Smallwood, Reynolds, Stewart, Stewart & Associates Inc., opened in 1987. The building is one of metro Atlanta’s most visible structures because of its exterior skin of silver reflective glass and white Georgia marble. The building has a two-story tapered top that resembles a round-cut diamond, according to the architectural firm.

The nearby Overlook II office building was purchased by the California Public Employees Retirement Systems (CalPers) in 1989 from Trammell Crow Co. for $117 million. In early 2004, the Hines-CalPers partnership, known as Hines National Office Partners LP, sold Overlook II to Cornerstone Real Estate Advisors Inc. of Hartford, CT for $31 million.

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