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CANTON, OH-Huntington National Bank, based in Columbus, has recently nearly doubled its office space at Huntington Plaza office tower, at 220 Market Ave. S. here in the Downtown. The bank, which merged with the former anchor tenant at the building, Unizan Financial Corp., in 2006, has added 20,717 sf to the current 26,020-sf lease. The term for the expansion is 10 years.

The company is consolidating other offices into the new space, including from locations in southern Summit County and Belden Village, says a spokesman with Huntington Plaza owner, Charlotte-based Allegiance Realty Corp. “They’re bringing in some folks in other outlets under the same roof, and have now become a regional office,” he says. Company employees in management, administration, insurance, investments and mortgages will move into their new offices by June.

Huntington is now the largest tenant in the 131,000-sf Plaza building, which includes tenants such as Black McCuskey Souers & Arbaugh; Tzangas Plakas, Mannos, Recupero LLC and Hall Kistler & Co. The spokesman wouldn’t divulge Huntington’s lease rate, but says an average rate in the area is about $15 per sf. The bank also has a branch in the building.

As part of the lease, Allegiance will provide $600,000 build out, as well as 75 parking spaces in the parking deck. The bank also received a $300,000 non-returnable economic development loan from the Canton Community Improvement Corp. to keep the firm from moving its offices to Belden Village, the spokesman tells GlobeSt.com.

The building is now about 96% occupied, the spokesman says. “The local market is certainly not over-supplied, but most buildings there don’t reach the 90s in occupancy,’ he says. The city, along I-77, is about 30 miles south of Akron and 60 miles south of Cleveland.

Allegiance, which owns and manages about 2.9 million sf of office, has about a third of that space in Ohio. “We’ve got an office tower in Toledo, two complexes in Columbus, and others in Dayton and Cincinnati,” the spokesman says. “The Midwest has been good to us. We’re a value-add buyer, and typically spend a lot on renovations to a property. It’s a tertiary market, so we’re not competing on acquisitions with tier-one buyers.”

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