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WASHINGTON, DC-San Francisco-based Shorenstein Properties has an agreement to purchase Franklin Tower, an East End office building located at 1401 Eye St., from KanAm International GmbH for approximately $148 million. According to a source, Franklin Tower is being acquired on behalf of an investment fund that closed last year with $1.1 billion in committed capital.

Both Shorenstein and Atlanta-based WestWind Capital Partners, which serves as KanAm’s US advisor, declined to comment on the transaction.

Franklin Tower is 227,809-sf, class A building, which is 98.5% leased. The 12-story building, which includes underground parking, was constructed in 1991 and renovated in 2005.

At over $650 per sf, this trade is among the highest in the District’s East End, according to Tonya Ginter, director of research for GVA Advantis. Other large sales include the Investment Building and 799 Ninth St.

In December the Investment Building, a class A property located at 1501 K St., traded for $290 million or $782 per sf. KanAm Group also sold this property. The sale of 799 Ninth St. for $127.5 million, or $634 per sf, took place in November.

Prices have become so high for DC properties, according to Ginter, that many owners are finding that they can now pay to add floors to their buildings, leasing the additional space and then selling the renovated buildings for a significant profit. This has been true especially in the central business district, which does not have much developable land available and is finding it hard to compete with East End properties.

“Though the cost of adding new floors can be pricey, the benefits can outweigh the risks, especially when sales prices are continuing to increase,” Ginter says.

Shorenstein Properties already owns four buildings in the District: Hamilton Square, a 237,000-sf building located on 600 14th St.; 1111 Penn Ave., a 331,000-sf property; 1875 K St., which is 173,500 sf; and 1625 K St., a 108,000-sf building.

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