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COSTA MESA, CA-Birtcher Development & Investments of Irvine has sold its 300,000-sf South Coast Home Furnishings Centre to South Coast Home Furnishings Center LLC for more than $100 million, according to the Irvine-based developer. The property, at 3333 Hyland Rd. along the San Diego Freeway, is the largest project of its kind in Orange County to be built specifically as a furnishings center.

According to Brandon Birtcher, president and CEO of Birtcher Development & Investments, the company envisioned the project as a place where customers could “shop for their home furnishings at one location and not travel to multiple locations throughout the county.” The center is 96% leased to major home furnishings tenants including Wickes Furniture, La-Z-Boy, NW Rugs, Creative Leather, Easy Life Furniture, Munro’s and C.S. Wo.

Under the oversight of Shannon Hondl and Bjorn Davidson, Birtcher worked with brokers at Lee & Associates to fill the property with a mix of home furnishing retailers.Birtcher also enlisted the Reza Investment Group for expertise in positioning the project for leasing and financing. In the sale to the new owner, both Birtcher and the buyer were represented by Jim Morrison, president of the Morrison Co.

Birtcher acquired the 20.5-acre property, which is less than a mile north of the South Coast Plaza shopping center, in the summer of 2005. The firm hired LeeSak Architects to design the project and, after demolishing the former State Farm Mutual Insurance building, broke ground on the development with Fullmer Construction as general contractor in the fall of 2005.

Birtcher developed the project in a joint venture with Newport Beach-based Buchanan Street Partners. In addition to acting as a financial partner, Buchanan structured the construction loan with Key Bank for the center.

The Costa Mesa project is the latest in a long line of design and furnishings-oriented developments for Birtcher. Over the past 30 years, the Birtcher family has developed and/or managed the Pacific Design Center, the Laguna Design Center, the Phoenix Design Center and the Dallas Design Center.

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