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SAN FRANCISCO-Scanlan Kemper Bard of Portland, OR has acquired two office buildings in the East Bay area for a combined $61.5 million. The Portland-basedreal estate merchant banking firm, through SKB Real Estate Investors LP and a co-investment vehicle, now takes title to the 43,661-sf Berkeley Tower in Berkeley and the 123,200-sf Jackson Center I & II in Oakland.

The seven-story Berkeley Tower was constructed in 1983 and sits on approximately a fifth of an acre in Downtown Berkeley at the corner of Shattuck and University avenues. The eight-story Jackson Center I & II was completed in 1962 and sits on nearly 1.4 acres at the intersection of 11th and Jackson streets in the Oakland CBD.

Overall occupancy is 80.5% at the two buildings, providing the new owners with potential upside both by filling the vacancy and raising rents when leases roll over.Bob Scanlan, SKB Chairman and CEO, points out that San Francisco rents have risen to levels not seen in the marketplace since 2000.

Tenants at the Berkeley Tower include Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratories, which has leased the building’s office space since 1999. The ground floor retail space is leased to a restaurateur and a coffee bistro.

Jackson Center I & II, which underwent a major structural renovation in 2000 and 2001, occupies a location “at the doorstep of the Alameda County seat,” observes SKB president Todd Gooding. He points out that government and public sector agencies are the backbone of the Oakland CBD office market.

Jackson Center I is currently 73.7% occupied by the County of Alameda, the Social Security Administration, the Department of Homeland Security and the National Park Service. Jackson Center II is a single-story structure with underground parking facility for 65 vehicles.

The Jackson Center II property, formerly occupied by the County of Alameda, is entitled for a 104 unit, mixed-use residential development. The two new SKB assets are part of a portfolio of 1.7 million sf that the company owns in the Bay Area, including the recently acquired San Francisco Giftcenter & Jewelrymart.

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