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WALTHAM, MA-Beacon Capital Partners has contracted to acquire the 980,000-sf Bay Colony Corporate Center–the premier office park of suburban Boston–for $274 million, according to published reports. The $280 per-sf price tops the $265 million paid by ING Clarion for Waltham Woods in 2000 and the $250 million paid by National Office Partners for Wellesley Gateway this past Thanksgiving.

If the deal goes through in early 2005 as expected, it would be the second major purchase here in two months for Beacon, which paid $77 million for 116 Huntington Ave. last month. The purchase would be financed by its BCSP III Fund, a $1-billion investment fund which focuses primarily on target markets in major cities. Beacon Capital and owner Shorenstein Co. did not return phone calls before deadline.

The office park was put out to bid this fall by the San Francisco-based Shorenstein and investment partner the State Teachers and Retirement System of Ohio, which acquired the asset in 1995 for approximately $160 million. Cushman & Wakefield, the exclusive broker for the sale, received more than 50 signed confidential agreements on the property, principal Edward C. Maher told GlobeSt.com and suitors in the final process included Boston Properties and RREEF Funds.

Completed in 1998, Bay Colony is located on Route 128 and overlooks the Cambridge Reservoir. It sits on a 58-acre landscaped parcel with three four-story buildings and one three-story building, and has over 3,000 parking spaces. The office space is currently 91% occupied with tenants including Private Healthcare, SAP America, PRTM and Charles River Ventures.

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