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Real Estate Weekly – 6/27/14

Abingdon office-warehouse building sold to Churchville Tile and Marble

BuildingNAI KLNB, of Towson, a division of real estate services company KLNB LLC that focuses on the sale and leasing of commercial office, industrial and warehouse properties, said it brokered the sale of 1301-B Governor Court, a single-story, 21,600-square-foot office and warehouse building in the William Paca Business Park in the Abingdon section of Harford County. The buyer, 1301-B Governor Court LLC, an entity affiliated with Churchville Tile and Marble, paid $1.33 million for the property. NAI KLNB principals David Fritz and Peter Dudley represented the seller, 5900 Erdman Inc., an entity affiliated with Regal Bank & Trust, and Toby Mink and Luke Wilson of CBRE represented the buyer. The building, built in 1998, features 13-foot-high ceilings, two dock-high loading doors and one drive-in door. Churchville Tile and Marble plans to move from its present location in Forest Hill and use the new space as both its headquarters and showroom.

Merritt Construction Services completes pharmacy renovation

Merritt Construction Services announced it completed the first phase of renovations of the Clinical Pharmacy at the Greater Baltimore Medical Center at 6701 N. Charles St.in Towson. The 4,000-square-foot project included areas for a new robotic box picker for medications, a narcotics room, a compounding area and an area for storage. The improvements will help increase automation and reduce the likelihood of medication errors. The existing staff will remain even with the new robotic systems in place, but they will now be able to spend more time providing clinical support for nursing and accelerating the patient discharge process. The renovation also includes a new state-of-the-art clean room, an anteroom, a separate changing room and IV and chemo prep rooms. Hord Coplan Macht was the architectural firm on the project, Leach Wallace provided engineering and Prosys was the construction manager. The pharmacy is expected to open fully in late August.

Whiting-Turner selected to build P.G. casino

MGM Resorts said it has chosen Towson-based Whiting-Turner Contracting Co. to build its new casino resort at National Harbor in Prince George’s County. The construction company will oversee dozens of subcontractors and about 2,000 workers as they build the new resort, which is scheduled to open in the summer of 2016. It will be the sixth — and probably last — casino in Maryland. MGM won a license in December to open a large casino and resort complex near the Potomac River. It would include a 300-suite hotel, a casino and seven restaurants. Whiting-Turner, one of the largest construction companies in the nation, is also building the Horseshoe Casino Baltimore backed by Caesars Entertainment.

Artemis Properties launches new website 

BuildingArtemis Properties Inc., a Baltimore firm that develops and manages real estate owned by Baltimore attorney and principal Baltimore Orioles owner Peter Angelos, announced the launch of a new corporate website (www.ArtemisProp.com), featuring descriptions, sample floor plans, map locations and photographs of properties in its portfolio. They include 100 N. Charles St., an iconic downtown office building also known as One Charles Center, as well as 10 N. Charles St., 210 N. Charles St. and 120 W. Fayette St., all in downtown Baltimore, and 210 W. Pennsylvania Ave. in Towson. The site also features an overview of the Charles Center business district that describes local amenities and transportation options and provides a history of the region, complete with historic photographs. The firm’s current portfolio encompasses more than 1 million square feet of office buildings and retail shopping centers in Maryland.

Dataprise to expand Rockville HQ

Dataprise Inc., of Rockville, an information technology services provider and systems integrator, announced it has signed a new, 10-year lease on its headquarters in Rockville. The company said it is expanding into more than 23,000 square feet and plans to hire an additional 30 employees to staff its state-of-the-art remote support and cloud service center. The new headquarters will provide the 200-employee firm with a working environment designed to encourage collaboration, innovation and development. Dataprise is expected to complete construction and move into the new space next February.

DAR Constitution Hall has rooftop solar array

Standard Solar Inc., of Rockville, a designer and installer of solar electric systems, announced it has completed a solar installation on a historic building in Washington. The rooftop array is expected to produce 100,786 kilowatt-hours of energy per year to help offset the energy demand of DAR Constitution Hall. The building, designed to house the annual convention of the Daughters of the American Revolution, is currently Washington’s largest concert hall. It opened in 1929 and was designated a National Historic Landmark in 1985.

RLJ Lodging Trust sells Austin hotel

RLJ Lodging Trust, of Bethesda, a real estate investment trust focused on premium-branded and compact full-service hotels, said it sold the 194-room Holiday Inn Austin NW Arboretum Area in Austin, Texas, for approximately $13.5 million, or $70,000 per key. The identity of the buyer was not disclosed. RLJ has been selling properties that it deems do not meet its long-term investment objectives. As of mid-June, the company had sold 15 of its hotels for gross proceeds of more than $130 million. The Arboretum Area hotel was built in 1984 and is located in the outlying suburbs of Austin. RLJ acquired it in 2006 as part of a 100-hotel portfolio. With the sale, the company currently owns 147 properties in 21 states and Washington, D.C.

Energy grant targets homeless housing

Healthy Neighborhoods Inc., a Baltimore-based nonprofit organization that works to increase home values and investments in Baltimore communities, is getting a $998,789 grant from the Maryland Energy Administration, the state agency announced on Friday. The money will help fund energy efficiency audits and energy upgrades in 26 facilities in Baltimore that house homeless people and individuals with special needs, such as persons with mental, physical or developmental disabilities or substance use disorders. HNI will partner with the Baltimore City Office of Home Energy and 11 nonprofit homeless housing and service providers in undertaking the energy conservation measures. Funds are coming from the state’s EmPOWER Maryland initiative, which has a goal of reducing energy consumption in Maryland by 15 percent by 2015.

RLJ acquires Miami Beach hotel

RLJ Lodging Trust, of Bethesda, said it has closed on its previously announced acquisition of the 231-room Hilton Cabana Miami Beach, for which it paid $71.6 million, or approximately $310,000 per room. RLJ, a real estate investment trust focused on premium-branded and compact full-service hotels, said the price was a “significant discount to replacement cost.” The company made a $7.2 million deposit upon entering into the purchase and sale agreement, and funded the remaining balance with cash on the balance sheet. With the addition of this hotel, RLJ now owns 148 properties, comprised of 146 hotels with approximately 23,000 rooms and two planned hotel conversions, located in 21 states and the District of Columbia.

Kamenetz unveils plan to reduce homelessness

Baltimore County Executive Kevin Kamenetz announced a multi-pronged, 10-year plan to prevent and reduce homelessness in the county, and said he will provide more than $530,000 in additional funding for the fiscal year that begins July 1 to implement a number of the plan’s strategies. Kamenetz made the announcement Thursday at the future site of Prospect Place in Rosedale, which when it is completed in the fall will offer 12 efficiency apartments for chronically homeless single adults, plus on-site case management to increase residents’ self-sufficiency. Officials said on any given night, more than 550 men, women and children are housed in homeless shelters or living on the streets and in encampments in areas around Baltimore County.

PERSONNEL

Virginia “Ginny” Vernick has joined Lutherville-based MacKenzie Commercial Real Estate Services LLC as a vice president. Vernick, a 30-year veteran of the Washington DC Metropolitan Area commercial real estate industry, will be located at the firm’s Annapolis office, and will spearhead MacKenzie’s retail expansion efforts in the Annapolis, DC/Suburban Maryland and Eastern Shore markets. Vernick spent 27 years with Transwestern, a commercial real estate firm headquartered in Bethesda. A native of Montgomery County, she entered the commercial real estate field as an agent after graduating from the University of Maryland, College Park, and developed an extensive list of clients that spanned the industry to include office, flex, industrial and retail users throughout the Washington DC Metropolitan market, including the Suburban Maryland and Northern Virginia submarkets. Vernick has spent the last five years transitioning her practice focus specifically to retail transactions.

LEASES 

Cushman & Wakefield of Maryland Inc. has been selected by Goldman Sachs to be the exclusive leasing representative for Station Ridge: Hanover. The four-building, Class A office complex at 7031, 7033, 7035 and 7037 Ridge Road totals 350,000 square feet. Cushman & Wakefield leasing agents Stuart Rienhoff, Adam Nachlas, Matt Melnick and Tyler Smith will market the LEED Gold-certified properties on behalf of Goldman Sachs. Station Ridge is located within three miles of Baltimore-Washington International Thurgood Marshall Airport and five miles of the National Security Agency and Fort Meade. The properties offer direct access to Amtrak and MARC trains at the BWI Rail Station via an elevated pedestrian bridge. Up to 167,053 square feet of space is currently available for lease.

ScholarChip, which was recently awarded a contract from the Baltimore County Public Schools system, signed a lease with St. John Properties Inc. for 7,560 square feet of office space at 9 Easter Court, a single-story, 30,120-square-foot R&D/flex office building in the Dolfield Business Park in Owings Mills. New York-based ScholarChip is a provider of technology and products that are used by school systems around the country to monitor attendance and support safety protocols for students and faculty members. The company anticipates employing approximately 20 workers at this new regional office during the first year of operation, with the possibility of increased hiring as new contracts are won. Will McCullough of St. John Properties represented the landlord and Blaine Milner of Re/Max Advantage Realty represented the tenant in the transaction.

Transoceanic Development LLC, a shipping and logistics company, signed a lease with Merritt Properties LLC for 5,400 square feet of office/warehouse space at the Beltway Business Community, 3730 Commerce Drive, Suites 1208-10, in Arbutus. Jonathan Green of NAI KLNB represented the tenant, and Merritt’s in-house leasing team of Jamie Campbell, Vince Bagli, Liz Tarran-Jones and Steve Shaw represented the landlord in the transaction

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