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COSTA MESA, CA-Guthrie Development Co. has acquired nearly 158,000 sf of tilt-up office and warehouse buildings for a condominium conversion project with $20 million in acquisition financing from Wrightwood Capital. The property is called Somerset Business Park and consists of five separate buildings comprising 28 rental units off the 710 Freeway at the intersection of Paramount and Somerset boulevards in Paramount.

According to Marty Kearney, investments director in Chicago-based Wrightwood Capital’s Newport Beach office, Somerset Business Park will be the first multi-tenant office/warehouse for-sale condominium project in Paramount. Kearney cites the “limited availability of land, lack of available condominium products and the tight rental markets” as factors in favor of the project.

The Somerset buildings were built in 1991 and occupy a parcel of 7.42 acres. The development site is close to major highways accessing Los Angeles International Airport, Downtown Los Angeles, the ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach and the Inland Empire.

Somerset Business Park is the latest in a series of industrial and condominium projects by locally based Guthrie, which has financed nine of its projects through Wrightwood. Among Guthrie’s other recent developments is its Guthrie Orange Business Center, a newly developed industrial park in Orange consisting of 15 freestanding industrial buildings ranging from 4,400 sf to 7,650 sf, which it sold out for $15 million.

All of the buildings at Orange Business Center were sold before the completion of the project, according to Robert Guthrie, president of the company. Another of its projects, at 2152 Alton Parkway in Irvine, is the conversion of a 122,125-sf industrial building into condominiums for sale in a development called the Alton Business Center.

In commenting on the Alton Business Center, Kearney said that condominium sales activity remains strong in the Orange County area. He cited the strong economy, low interest rates, accessible financing and the limited supply of industrial product as factors driving the market.

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