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HAYWARD, CA-Optisolar is marketing its 650,000-square-foot manufacturing facility in McClellan, CA for sublease. The locally based thin-film solar startup suspended build-out of the building at McClellan Business Park in January at the same time it laid off 290 of its 612 employees, saying it would review its real estate needs in an attempt to conserve cash. In April, it agreed to sell its project pipeline to publicly held First Solar for $400 million in stock.

Optisolar has tapped a team of brokers at Jones Lang LaSalle to scare up a tenant for its power-heavy facility at McClellan. Optisolar leased the space in spring 2008 and had partially completed build-out prior to pulling the plug. The length of the long-term lease wasn’t immediately available but the incentive package from the Sacramento County Board of Supervisors included $20 million over a period of 25 years. The plant was expected to create 500 jobs over the next three years and produce a net gain of $25 million to the county tax rolls.

JLL managing director Bart Lammersen has the sublease assignment with Derek Johnson, Bryan Huarte, Jason Ovadia, Kevin Ahaesy. Ovadia and Ahaesy joined JLL’s Northern California logistics and industrial services team this spring from Cushman & Wakefield. Lammerson was not immediately available Monday afternoon for comment.

“This is a very attractive opportunity for a clean-tech, big box or manufacturing user to secure space in a building that has already received significant power and mechanical upgrades as well as enhancements to the surrounding transportation infrastructure,” Lammersen said in a prepared statement. Johnson adds that that asset is available on “very flexible lease terms for the right user.”

McClellan Business Park, launched in 2001, is a 3,000-acre property with onsite rail access that is being developed on a former air force base near interstates 5 and 80. The property includes approximately 8.5 million square feet of useable buildings and 500 acres of developable land that is fully entitled for over 16 million square feet of commercial, retail, office and residential buildings.

The project developer is McClellan Business Park LLC, a joint venture of Morgan Stanley Real Estate Fund, Stuart Lichter of Industrial Real Estate Group and Kelley and Assoc. McClellan Business Park LLC announced this week a new $95-million secured credit facility led by Wells Fargo Bank that also includes Bank of America, Safe Credit Union, and River City Bank. McClellan Park president Larry Kelley—owner of Kelley and Assoc. and also the founder and managing member of Stanford Ranch I LLC, a 3,500-acre master-planned community in Placer County–called the five-year revolving line of credit for McClellan Business Park “essential to continuing our leasing and improvement plans.”

Under its development agreement with Sacramento County, who selected McClellan Business Park LLC for the opportunity to redevelop the air force base, the county gets 4% of revenue generated by the property, over and above an undisclosed sum. Approximately five million square feet of the existing buildings have been leased.

Tenants include Northrop Grumman; Buetler Corp.; SureWest Communications; the US Dept. of Agriculture; Sacramento Container; JCPenney; Sears; Fidelity National Information Services Inc.; Lions Gate Hotel, and the California Aerospace Museum. Sacramento Regional Transit plans to occupy 200,000 square feet next year.

In addition to the McClellan manufacturing facility Optisolar has three leaseholds in Hayward, at 31032 Huntwood Ave., 31023 Huntwood and 31172 Huntwood Ave. The first address, owned by Rreef, is its 80,000-square-foot headquarters and production facility, the second address is additional administrative space, the square footage and ownership of which was not immediately available, and the third address, owned by PNK LLC, is 60,000 square feet of expansion that the company committed to in the fall but has not yet occupied.

Company spokesperson Alan Bernheimer told GlobeSt.com earlier this year that the lease at 31023 Huntwood was set to expire “soon.” The lease from PNK, signed in November, totals five years and approximately $2 million ($0.53 NNN per square foot per month on average). Optisolar reportedly took the building “as is” and received some free rent and a small TI allowance. It planned to use the space for office and R&D.

Optisolar was one of several solar companies that took down space in the Bay Area in 2008. In June 2008, Innovalight Inc., a maker of thin-film solar panel modules leased 35,537 square feet of a 49,000-square-foot, two-story building within AMB Property Corp’s two-building, 85,454-square-foot Arques Business Park in Sunnyvale.

In April 2008, SVTC Technologies, an independent semiconductor process-development foundry that is venturing into the solar market leased 85,000 sf in San Jose that will be used to provide solar panel manufacturers the same service it offers the semiconductor industry. The space is within Hellyer Oaks Technology Park, a two-building 353,000-sf complex owned by Golden Gate Real Estate. “

In March 2008, Stion Corp, a manufacturer of thin-film solar technology signed a five-year lease that relocated its headquarters to San Jose. The company is expanding from 11,000 sf in Menlo Park to 65,000 square feet in the Edenvale industrial area of South San Jose. In early 2007, Palo Alto, CA-based Nanosolar Inc. leased 90,000 square feet of a 203,800-square-foot building at 5521 Hellyer Ave. that is owned by Mission West Properties.

In March 2009, a couple of months after First Solar and Optisolar sealed their deal, San Francisco-based Recurrent Energy acquired a 350-megawatt, Canada-weighted solar power project pipeline from UPC Solar, a Chicago-based renewable energy development company.

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