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SAN DIEGO-Hines wants a piece of San Diego. After a decade of studying the local market, the Houston-based Hines has picked up its second major property in the area in less than three months.Hines acquired Pacific Plaza at Torrey Hills for an undisclosed amount, though a source close to the deal says the property fetched a near record amount in the area, upwards of $400 a sf.”San Diego is a strategic market for Hines, and we will continue to expand our presence in the area,” says locally based manager for Hines, Paul Twardowski. He adds that Hines will build the portfolio through acquisition and development of office property.Hines bought the three-building, 225,000-sf Pacific Plaza corporate office campus from developer Coast Income Properties. The local outfit was the property’s original owner, having developed the eight-acre site in 1999. Pacific Plaza is 100% leased to major tenants, including Qualcomm Inc., Cisco Systems, Iomega, Rudolph and Sletten, the Producers Group and Pickford Realty. The campus includes a four-story, 85,300-sf building, a three-story, 75,000-sf facility and a three-story, 60,000-sf property.Hines picked up the campus on behalf of National Office Partners LP, its investment partnership with CalPERS. Secured Capital Corp. represented the seller, and Hines was represented in-house in the deal. Hines will assume property management andleasing responsibilities.The acquisition of Pacific Plaza follows Hines’ July purchase of the Downtown trophy property Golden Eagle Plaza. Hines paid Santa Ana-based Triple Net Properties LLC $116.8 million for the office tower.The deals are part of Hines’ Southern California growth plan, according to Doug Holte, a principal with Hines, responsible for Southern California investment and development. Colin Shepherd, a partner with Hines, rounds out the Southern California team.Holte tells Globest.com that Hines has ambitious goals for both San Diego and Orange County. “We’ve been active in San Francisco, Seattle and Los Angeles for 25 years,” Holte says. “We’ve monitored Orange County and San Diego for 10 years and they are absolute key targets for us to grow.”Holte says plans are to hold portfolios of between three million sf and five million sf in both San Diego and Orange. “We see those counties as stand alone markets where we can both own and develop properties,” Holte says.Besides the acquisitions, Hines has projects in the pipeline in both counties. Holte says the firm will soon announce final plans of a 350,000-sf project in the north coastal area of San Diego. Also, the firm will begin construction soon on a 12-story, 260,000-sf office site at 2211 Michelson in Irvine.

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