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PORTLAND, OR-JB Matteson Inc., a Redwood City, CA-based apartment investor that makes value-add investments with institutional partners, has acquired the 24-story, 185-unit Harrison Tower Apartments here for approximately $45 million i partnership with ING Clarion Partners LLC. Recently set up to be converted to condominiums, the building was sold empty and with no condo sales contracts pending, according to the new owner.

Harrison Tower was one of three towers totaling 536 units that comprised the Portland Center Apartments, all of which Equity Residential sold for $77.5 million in 2005 to Portland Center Investors, a local partnership intent on converting them to condominiums. The first two towers were emptied of tenants, renovated and converted. One has eight units remaining to be sold and the other has 38 units remaining unsold.

Harrison Tower was to be the third conversion. JB says it sourced the acquisition directly from the local partnership on a principal-to-principal basis. PCCP provided the acquisition financing. The loan to cost was not immediately available.

JB Matteson says the previous owner substantially completed a renovation of the building. The units now have new granite countertops, new cabinets, stainless steel appliances, new operable windows, bathroom vanities and flooring. An adjacent underground parking structure provides one parking space per unit. JB Matteson, which will manage the final renovations and lease-up, says the sales center will be converted to a leasing center, administrative offices, and a cyber café. The ground floor of the building will be converted to a fitness center overlooking the swimming pool and spa area.

“Upon lease-up, Harrison Tower Apartments will represent a core institutional asset,” says JB Matteson president John Bellack. “The real estate fundamentals here are very strong: Portland is adding jobs, the apartment market appears counter-cyclical to housing, the Downtown location is superb, and the investment is well below replacement costs.”

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