NEW YORK CITY-GDC Properties Inc. of Hawthorne, NY has acquired the East Sandford Boulevard Shopping Center in Mount Vernon for $68.5 million in a direct sale with G&S Investors. GDC is changing its focus and has committed itself to acquiring $500 million in commercial income properties.

“This acquisition is the first of many in the redeployment of GDC Properties’ investment capital out of our condo-valued apartment communities and into higher-yielding commercial properties in the Northeast, Atlanta and Florida,” explains GDC chairman Samuel Ginsburg. The 296,229-sf retail center houses Target, Best Buy, Petco, Bed Bath & Beyond and TJ Maxx. Completed in 2004, it is partially enclosed with an interior corridor.

William F. Ingraham, president of GDC, tells, that the firm is making the asset reallocation by “default” due to the booming condo conversion market. “Sadly it isn’t a rental market anymore, it’s all driven by condo conversion. We’re being forced out. The next best use is retail.” He says the firm will be “playing it safe at first” with solid, high-quality retail acquisitions. “We’re not experts yet.” Ingraham says GDC is not ruling out a return to the rental market someday when market conditions improve.

The company has sold or is in the process of selling several apartment communities throughout Florida, New Jersey and New York and in Atlanta, GA. The firm estimates that its transactions will exceed $1 billion through this shift in asset allocation.

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