Real Estate Briefs

  • Tuesday, September 2, 2008 1:29pm

Boeing leases space in Harbour Pointe Tech Center

The Boeing Co. recently leased about 150,000 square feet at Harbour Pointe Tech Center in Mukilteo, according to Colliers International, which represented building owner Prescott Realty Group in the transaction.

Included in the office lease is 9,000 square feet of warehouse space. The building’s Dallas, Texas-based owner acquired the building in 2000. Other tenants of the 335,000-square-foot, Class A building include Smith’s Aerospace, Eaton Electrical, Diligenz Inc., Saturn and CombiMatrix.

Derek Heed, Gregg Riva, Stephen Rothrock and Erin Conger of Colliers represented Prescott Realty Group. Mike Buzar, Ric Brandt and John Bauer of CB Richard Ellis represented Boeing, which planned to begin occupancy this quarter.

“This lease is one of the largest office leases in our market in recent history,” said Heed, senior vice president with Colliers. “Boeing growing its office needs locally is a boost to the northend office market and a vote of confidence for Puget Sound.”

“We are excited to see Boeing moving into one of the county’s most desirable office properties — Harbour Pointe Tech Center,” said Deborah Knutson, president of the Snohomish County Economic Development Council. “It’s a beautiful building and an ideal location for one of this county’s longtime, highly respected companies.”

Growth board OKs building on farmland

The Central Puget Sound Growth Management Hearings Board in early February upheld a controversial move by Snohomish County to allow commercial buildings on a patch of former farmland near Arlington.

The panel agreed that about six acres of Laurin Foster’s dairy farm may now be open to commercial development.

The growth management board last year told the county the change would not be allowed. However, the County Council in January decided to bolster its legal fight to get the change approved.

Officials argued that Foster threatened to build six homes on his 57 acres of farmland, but pledged preservation of 51 acres if the county allowed commercial buildings on about six acres.

Foster, 74, a former dairy farmer who sold his herd in 2000, is recovering from cancer and hoping to retire.

A majority of those on the council argued that making this change preserves farmland.

A group that advocates strong controls on growth, called Futurewise, objected to allowing the farmland to be developed.

Keith Scully, the group’s legal director, said an appeal is unlikely because Foster can apply for and win development permits long before any court would hear and rule on an appeal.

Everett OKs $8 million sale

of riverfront property

The Everett City Council in February voted 6-0 to sell a two-mile stretch of industrial land along the Snohomish River to San Diego developer OliverMcMillan for $8 million. Councilman Ron Gipson was absent for the vote.

“This is a landfill site, and it’s going to be turned into a people place,” said Paul Buss, president of OliverMcMillan. He called the deal a “tremendous opportunity” for his company to develop a “unique and high-quality” development.

By 2010, the California developer says, the 221-acre site will be a mix of upscale condos, shops and restaurants.

Buss said several interested tenants already are lining up, including one that wants to open a movie theater.

At the same time, the developer promises to set aside about 100 acres for preservation as salmon habitat, wetlands, trails, a park and a possible kayak launch.

It also plans to build the site to stringent environmental standards established by the U.S. Green Building Council, or face a $1 million penalty.

Developer revises remodel

plans for Old Milltown mall

A developer has revised his plans to remodel an iconic downtown building in Edmonds, and he could have the green light to move forward.

However, developer Bob Gregg said he still plans to pursue a lawsuit against the city for striking down his earlier renovation plans.

Gregg, owner of the Old Milltown shopping mall, recently gained approval from the city’s Architectural Design Board to remodel the 107-year-old building. He had to alter his original renovation plans after the City Council upheld an Edmonds woman’s appeal against his project.

The only significant change to Gregg’s plans is that he won’t remodel the northeast corner of the building, which is partially separated from the rest of the building by an alley. Gregg plans to wall off that portion of the building and leave it empty.

Gregg originally planned to build over the alley and expand the northeast corner of the building out to the sidewalk of Dayton Street. However, that part of his plan was the focus of the controversy that led to the appeal, Gregg said.

“I have no idea what I’m going to do with that now,” Gregg said.

In its early days, Old Milltown housed a Ford dealership, a bus barn and a water company. In the early 1970s, the building was converted into an indoor mall, with wide walkways and staircases connecting shops on the building’s two floors.

Gregg said he wants to remove the staircases and separate the two floors with a 15-foot ceiling. The top floor is slated to be leased as office space, and the bottom floor would be split into spaces for three tenants, he said.

Home sales slow, prices

see double-digit increase

Home sales in Snohomish County continued to slow significantly in January, but that didn’t stop a double-digit increase in the median price, according to the Northwest Multiple Listing Service.

Following a trend that emerged last summer, inventories rose substantially and sales dropped from prior-year levels. Prices rose more slowly than they had a year ago.

But the combined median price for single-family homes and condos still hit $348,000 in January, a 16 percent rise from a year ago, when the median was $299,950. Median means half the homes sold for more and half sold for less.

Listing service officials said January sales started slowly because of the bad weather but picked up significantly later in the month.

Condominiums appeared more popular in Snohomish County in January than single-family homes. Condo sales were essentially identical to a year ago, even though the median price has risen from $185,000 12 months ago to $233,514 in January.

By comparison, buyers snapped up 869 single-family homes a year ago and bought only 711 in January. Median prices there rose from $317,000 a year ago to $370,700 in January.

The number of closed sales was about 15 percent less in January than it was a year ago. There were 1,022 homes sold a year ago and 869 in January.

Pending sales also dropped in January, by 7.31 percent.

Listings swelled by 31.4 percent, rising from around 3,000 homes for sale a year ago to more than 4,000 in January.

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