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IRVINE, CA-The Koll/PER partnership has acquired a 63,225-sf office and warehouse building here that it will convert to office condominiums for sale in a LEED-certified project, according to officials of the Newport Beach-based investment and development firm. The property, which occupies a parcel of nearly 2.3 acres on Fitch Avenue near John Wayne Airport, will be redeveloped into a new complex that will be called Airport Professional Center.

The Koll/PER partnership, which is a limited liability company owned by the Koll Co. and the Public Employee Retirement System of Idaho, acquired the property from a Menlo Park-based LLC called WCRI. Koll/PER will create the new complex by removing the top story of the existing two-story building and reconfiguring the remaining floor into four to eight for-sale office condo units totaling 40,000 sf.

According to Scott Meserve, development manager for the Koll Co., the office units will be marketed with flexible floor plans that will allow potential buyers the opportunity to more precisely purchase square footage for their business use. The new building will also feature a covered central core that includes direct access to each unit as well as restroom facilities and stairwells leading to underground parking.

This central core will materially reduce the cost for buyers to build out their units because they will not need to include restrooms as part of their tenant improvements, Meserve points out. The redevelopment plan also includes adding 10 parking spaces to the existing 150 spaces, increasing the parking ratio to four spaces per 1,000 sf of building area, which is typical for the local office market, Meserve says.

The project site is approximately three-fourths of a mile from John Wayne Airport and is located in a triangle formed by Interstate 5, Interstate 405 and the 55 Freeway. Redevelopment of the building is expected to begin in June of 2008.

The new project will achieve LEED benchmarks for design, construction, and operation of a high-performance green building, according to Meserve. In addition to being beneficial to the environment, the building will offer long-term economic benefits to the future owners through sustainable design, water savings, energy efficiency, and indoor environmental quality, Meserve points out.

The Fitch Avenue building is occupied by Tycom Corp., a subsidiary of Kyocera. Koll/PER bought it in a transaction that was brokered by Dave Mudge and Jeff Ruscigno of the Riverside office of Lee & Associates, who represented both sides of the transaction.

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