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HOUSTON-The 1.1-million-square-foot JPMorgan Chase Center in the CBD has gone to a new owner, Texas Tower Ltd., a Hines entity. The class A office building, valued by the Houston County Appraisal District at $32 million, is adjacent to the 75-story JPMorgan Chase Tower, which is also owned by Texas Tower Ltd.

JPMorgan Chase Center at 601 Travis St. was not widely marketed, but “enough people out there knew it was on the market,” comments Mark Russell, executive vice president and co-branch manager of Studley Inc.’s Houston office, who led the team representing JPMorgan Chase in the transaction. Russell acknowledges it was a difficult environment in which to sell much of anything, even a CBD trophy asset. “It was a challenging transaction to close,” he tells GlobeSt.com. Russell referred questions about financing to Hines, which declined an interview request.

The sale is the result of JPMorgan Chase’s consolidation to 712 Main and 1111 Fannin Streets, though the financial institution will retain just 26,000 square feet at the Center. Upon Chase’s departure in 2010, approximately 250,000 square feet will be available for lease. Hines’ Paula Bruns and Liz Shaw have been retained to handle leasing. Bank of New York Mellon also leases space in the Center. Though JPMorgan Chase will no longer be a main tenant at the Center, Russell says there are no immediate plans to change the building’s name.

The Center was developed by Hines and completed in 1982. I.M. Pei & Partners was the designer. JPMorgan Chase used the location as a data processing and operations center.

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