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ITASCA, IL-Wells Real Estate Investment Trust Inc. has purchased the 27-story Gallagher Centre here, mostly occupied by insurance broker firm Arthur J. Gallagher & Co. The Norcross, GA-based REIT bought the 487,000-SF tower, in the Chancellory at Hamilton Lakes office park, from a joint venture of Gallagher and Hamilton Partners.

The property, built in 1991, is in the North DuPage submarket, near Interstate 290 and O’Hare International Airport, where office lease rates are around $25.97 per sf. Spencer Patton, senior vice president of acquisitions for Wells, tells GlobeSt.com that his company is a big believer in Chicagoland. He says Wells is encouraged by the strength of the Gallagher lease, extended until 2018 and occupying 63% of the building. The center is more than 90 percent leased, Patton says. Other tenants include Sun Microsystems. Paul Lundstedt with Cushman & Wakefield represented the seller in the deal.

“I can’t comment on the price, but we bought at below replacement cost.” Patton says. “We’re committed to building a presence there, it’s a fantastic location and has quality real estate assets. We’ll continue to look to acquire more properties in the metropolitan Chicago area. In August, the company purchased the five-story headquarters building for Office Max in Naperville, where the supply chain moved into its offices six months ago.Wells has 87 buildings in 24 states, covering more than 21 million sf.

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