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PHOENIX-Following a yearlong hold of 11.85 acres, a local developer has launched construction on the 178,930-sf Colonial Center at Southbank. The development site has been bought for $6.58 million.

The all-in construction cost for the project isn’t available, but the finished product will sold for $140 per sf or available for lease at $1.35 per sf, triple net. Located at 3439-3501 E. University Dr., the flex office project is scheduled for completion in the fall. It will consist of five freestanding buildings ranging from 30,403 sf to 45,557 sf.

Colonial Development LLC in Scottsdale acquired one of the last available parcels in the 322-acre Southbank Business Park to build the first flex office spec space in its bounds in nine years. “With land prices so high, it took awhile before rental rates and sales prices were high enough so developers could afford to build there and sell at a price that would justify buying the land,” explains Jerry McCormick, first vice president with the Phoenix office of CB Richard Ellis.

McCormick, who is marketing the buildings, tells GlobeSt.com that the developer held onto the land for one year while it weighed the best product for the area. He adds that the buildings are being constructed in a way that they can be used for light assembly or office. “This is for the high-tech guy who might make widgets and needs air-conditioning in the back for manufacturing or an engineering company,” he says.

McCormick adds that the CBRE team, which includes senior vice president John Werstler and first vice president Seth Garrett, currently is talking to potential users. Colonial Development is eyeballing other sites in town, but nothing is under contract, according to McCormick.

Colonial Center was designed by David L. Schmitt & Associates of Scottsdale. True Performance Builders Inc. of Phoenix is the general contractor.

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