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MIAMI-Following its acquisition of five buildings in the 12-building Waterford @ Blue Lagoon office park here, MetLife has turned management and leasing over to a team in the Coral Gables office of Atlanta-based Taylor & Mathis. The MetLife buildings aggregate 340,000 sf.

Jeannette Pay, marketing manager of Taylor & Mathis of Florida, tells GlobeSt.com the average asking rental rate in the buildings ranges from $22 per sf to $24 per sf. Pay, Brian Gale and Ben Moss head the leasing and management team, “and we’ve worked with MetLife since 1991 on other properties in this area,” she says. In addition to its 12 office buildings, Waterford @ Blue Lagoon contains several hotels, meeting facilities, restaurants and cafes.

Current occupancy in the MetLife buildings, which are located at 5757, 5775, 5805, 6101 and 6161 Waterford, is 84%, 70%, 91%, 82% and 86%, respectively, according to Pay. Among the existing tenants are Miami Children’s Hospital, Verizon Wireless, Breitling USA Inc. and Yves Saint Lauren Beaute Miami. The buildings were constructed between 1982 and 1987, and Pay says they are class B office facilities.

The overall Miami-Dade office vacancy rate is nearly 13.7%, according to a second-quarter report from the local office of CB Richard Ellis. The average asking lease rate is $24.40 per sf.

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