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IRVINE, CA-A development venture formed by Houston-based Hines and Fort Worth-based Crescent Real Estate Equities will develop a 12-story, 260,000-sf office project on a recently purchased 1.2-acre site at 18501 Von Karman Ave., just west of Michelson Drive. The development entity, called Hines/Crescent Irvine, expects to begin construction in early 2006 and complete construction in mid-2007.The development site is now a surface parking lot but was always contemplated for a fourth and final office building for the Von Karman Towers campus, formerly known as Koll Center Irvine. The new project is subject to a Development Agreement contract with the City of Irvine, which governs allowable development on the site.Hines officials tell GlobeSt.com that they haven’t announced the local broker listing team for the development yet but will do so very soon. Meanwhile, Hines will be creating a project marketing program this summer. The building will be designed by DMJM Architects of Los Angeles, with a general contractor to be named later this year. Hines says the business plan is to develop the property for long-term ownership and management.Hines SVP Doug Holte led the joint acquisition of the development site for Hines, while managing director of investments Tom Miller represented Crescent. Holte, an 18-year Hines veteran, will be relocating from Los Angeles to Irvine to spearhead this and other investment and development projects in Orange and San Diego counties.The new building will be in the Orange County Airport office submarket, where Crescent, a REIT, already owns a project called Dupont Centre. The 250,000-sf Dupont Centre, which was built in 1986, is approximately 90% occupied at rents of about $27.50 per sf per month. John C. Goff, vice chairman and CEO of Crescent, says the REIT considers the airport submarket a good play because of “the anticipated employment growth and demand for high-end office space.” Also, he says, “This site is one of the best in the area.”

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