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UPPER MERION TWP., PA-Dallas-based Cypress Equities acquired a 27-acre site at 181 S. Gulph Rd. and the Schuylkill Expressway near King of Prussia from locally based AMC Delancey Group. Kenneth Balin, AMC Delancey’s president and CEO, tells GlobeSt.com the price was $17.5 million, or about $648,148 an acre.

Cypress plans to develop a Home Depot and one or more additional retail tenant spaces. The site contains the 400,000-sf now-vacant Philadelphia Gear Co. plant, which will be demolished. Steven Kushner, managing principal of Cypress’ New York City office, tells GlobeSt.com the Home Depot will be approximately 115,000 sf with a 28,000-sf garden center. The zoning also allows for a pet store and auto dealership, he says, but no deals for such units are now in place.

The Home Depot is scheduled for completion in summer 2007. As a part of Cypress’ agreement with Home Depot, Cypress will acquire an existing 130,000-sf Home Depot on an 11.5-acre parcel a mile from the new one and develop it for retail use, once Home Depot moves to the new location. Kushner declined to disclose the price of that acquisition and says, “We really don’t know yet what we’ll do with it. We’re really focused on the new store, and the existing one won’t be available until the move.”

Philadelphia Gear and AMC Delancey are sister companies of Wind River Holdings, a King of Prussia-based investment company. The property became “surplus,” Balin says, when the gear manufacturer switched to a service orientation and relocated. In partnership with Philadelphia-based Keating Co., AMC Delancey developed plans for 400,000 sf of office space and a hotel at the site, but ran into objections from the township.

Lacking progress on that plan, Balin says, “We scrutinized the light-industrial zoning and saw it did allow for a car dealership, lumber yard, plumbing supply and pet supply store.” AMC Delancey worked with Dan Hughes of Metro Commercial in discussions with Lowe’s and Home Depot. Balin says he then enlisted Arthur Weisman of NAI Geis Realty to propose a sale to Cypress. “Because it was a ‘by right’ sale that had all the permits required by law, the purchase price was kicked up.”

Weisman represented AMC Delancey. Cypress is the retail development and acquisition affiliate of Staubach Retail, also based in Dallas. Rich Weitzman of Staubach Retail’s Philadelphia office represented Cypress.

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