CHARLOTTE, NC-Buchanan Street Partners has committed $18.7 million to a 363,000-sf class A office and retail property rising in the central business district. All total, the 15-story property will include 356,000 sf of office and 7,000 sf of ground-floor retail.The property is slated for completion in 2009.

“The Charlotte central business district is one of the strongest office markets in the country,” Steve McCarthy, managing director of Buchanan Street Partners’ Atlanta office, says in a statement. “The low vacancy rate–less than 2%–coupled with a projected rental growth rate of almost 7% through 2008 make for a solid investment environment.”

The asset, 440 South Church St., will be one of five new office buildings to be delivered in Downtown. It will be leased and managed by Trinity Partners, an affiliate of Trinity Capital.

Buchanan’s investment partners the Newport Beach, CA-company with Novare Group Holdings LLC and Trinity Capital Advisors LLC. The asset is part of Novare’s 5.2-acre master-planned development within the CBD. A Buchanan Street spokeswoman tells the development price tag for 440 South Church is $80 million. Novare’s master-planned mixed-use project carries a $300-million total development cost, she adds.

Three other properties will round out the development–Catalyst, a 462-unit condo tower; Twelve Hotel & Residences, a boutique hotel/residential tower; and a 1,208-space parking garage. Catalyst, a 27-story residential tower at the corner of Church Street and Martin Luther King, Jr. Boulevard, broke ground in August. It will feature one- and two-bedroom units and 20,000 sf of ground-floor retail. Twelve Charlotte will contain approximately 400 condos and a 150-room Twelve Hotel. It will also include 6,000 sf of restaurant and bar space, and a 5,000-sf ballroom/event area. Both Catalyst and Twelve Charlotte are also eying a 2009 completion date.

“Buchanan is a strong equity partner with the foresight and creativity to recognize promising new opportunities,” John Long, chief investment officer of Novare Group Holdings, says in a statement. “Charlotte has one of the country’s most dynamic downtowns, and we, along with Trinity and Buchanan, are excited to be involved in the evolution and development of this great city. Through Buchanan’s leadership, we are now literally at the ground floor of a booming market.”

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