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BOSTON-DTZ FHO Partners has been tapped by the First Church of Christ, Scientist to handle interim leasing of two office properties on the Christian Science Plaza, a sprawling multi-building complex located in Boston’s Back Bay. The assignment is being headed by the DTZ FHO Partners Asset Advisory Group which focuses on helping building owners enhance their holdings.

“It will be nice space,” church spokeswoman Debbi Lawrence tells GlobeSt.com. About 130,000 sf will be available at 177 Huntington Ave., a 26-story high-rise that features views of Fenway Park and other surrounding landmarks, while another 70,000 sf is being freed up at 103 Belvidere St. Employees in those buildings will relocate into the church’s recently refurbished Publishing House at 210 Massachusetts Ave. during the next 60 days. That property also is the home of the renowned Mary Baker Eddy Library, named in honor of the religious order’s founder.

DTZ FHO Partners principal J. Duncan Gratton and Lauria Brennan are overseeing the lease-up for the client. The effort to fill the two office buildings comes as the church prepares to meet with neighbors and the city of Boston on a long-range master plan for its 14-acre campus.

Given the anticipated time it could take to create such a vision, the church opted to lease the space rather than let the buildings sit vacant, explains Lawrence. Not only can that generate revenue, she says the church feared the area might be impacted from having so much empty space in the normally vibrant neighborhood. The opportunity could benefit surrounding businesses as well, she notes. “We have space and they have needs and this is a good pairing of that supply and demand,” she says.

While it might not be equated to divine intervention, the available product could prove a godsend for tenants trying to operate in one of the city’s tightest office markets. First quarter figures from Jones Lang LaSalle put the 12.8-million-sf office market at a mere 4% vacancy, lowest in the city, while the average asking rate is up to $65.38 per sf, even loftier than the Financial District’s average of $62.78 per sf. With terms to be not much longer than two or three years, there will likely be a rate discount, acknowledges Lawrence, but says it is unclear at what rate range the space will be offered.

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