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Business Observer Friday, Dec. 11, 2015 4 years ago

Commercial Real Estate

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Feldman holding on to tower; Tampa tower gets BOMA award
by: Kevin McQuaid Commercial Real Estate Editor

Feldman holding on to tower
Speculation has swirled for months that Feldman Equities LLC, the St. Petersburg-based commercial real estate investment and development firm that plans to build the region's tallest skyscraper, would shed its Morgan Stanley Tower.

The 17-story building, at 150 Second Ave. N. in St. Petersburg, achieved full occupancy in November after lease deals with Paradise Marketing, Morgan Stanley, Enstar, Re/Max Metro and Capital Reports, prompting talk that it would become the next in a series of area skyscrapers to trade hands amid rising values and demand.

Feldman and partners Tower Realty Partners and Second City Capital Partners added to the buzz when they undertook a multimillion renovation to upgrade the 190,000-square-foot building's lobby, add a concierge desk, enhance elevator systems and restrooms and improve parking garage lighting.

When Feldman and Tower Realty bought the 30-year-old building in 2013 for just more than $20 million, Morgan Stanley Tower was just 65% committed.

Class A office buildings have been in particular demand among investors in Tampa and St. Petersburg in the past two years. This summer, for instance, Highwoods Properties paid $124 million to acquire the 35-story SunTrust Financial Centre downtown.

But Feldman president and CEO Larry Feldman says that while the ownership group considered selling the tower, no deal is in the works.

“We had considered a sale, but we recently refinanced the property,” Feldman wrote in a recent email. “We have no plans to sell.”

Feldman and Tower Realty's next project is slated to be a 52-story skyscraper in downtown Tampa. Riverwalk Tower is being designed to contain ground-floor retail, parking, offices and luxury residences. It is slated for completion in 2018.

Tampa tower gets BOMA award
Even as world leaders negotiate in Paris to mitigate climate change, a Tampa office tower is receiving kudos for its “green” efforts.

The Building Owners and Managers Association of Tampa Bay has awarded Tampa City Center its “Earth Award” in its “Outstanding Building of the Year” program for 2015.

The 39-story tower, built in 1981, owned by Alliance Partners HSP and managed by Cushman & Wakefield, is LEED EB Gold certified and was recognized for air quality; green cleaning; recycling; and resource conservation.

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