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BURLINGTON, MA-Less than six months after entering the Boston market, Dallas-based Behringer Harvard has added to its Bay State holdings with the $82.3-million acquisition of two interconnected, fully-leased office buildings for its REIT I portfolio. The Gutierrez Co., of Burlington, was the seller on the 270,000-sf properties at 5 & 15 Wayside in Burlington. The buildings are fully leased to mobile-phone supplier Nokia for its northeast regional headquarters.

Jason Mattox, executive vice president with Behringer Harvard, tells GlobeSt.com that the acquisition represented a value added play by the Dallas buyer, which envisions the properties returning strong results as market conditions improve.

“First and foremost, we like the marketplace and certainly this submarket and what has been happening in this submarket,” says Mattox, noting that the Boston area has seen a tremendous turnaround since the tech bust of the 1990s.

Built in 1999 and 2001 for Nokia, the two building property along Route 128 just 12 miles north of Boston is set amid a booming cluster of other high tech tenants that include Microsoft, Sun Microsystems, Hewlett-Packard, BAE Systems and Nortel Networks.

The Burlington acquisition was Behringer Harvard’s second since July when it entered the market with the $27 million purchase of the Ferncroft Corporate Center, an eight-story, 226,088-sf office property originally built as the regional headquarters for Verizon Information Services.

Mattox says the firm, which also owns assets in a number of top cities, including Los Angeles, Chicago, Houston, Atlanta, Denver, Philadelphia and Washington, DC, believes the Boston market’s strengthening fundamentals make it attractive for other future buys.

“Boston is certainly of interest to us,” he says. “For the same reason we’re interested in this asset as well as the Ferncroft asset is why Boston will continue to be on our radar screen.”

The transaction was handled for the seller by Cushman & Wakefield’s Jim Thomson and Doug Jacoby. The team also procured the buyer in the deal.

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