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June 30 , 2004

REIT Buys 90% Stake in 380,000-SF Center

June 30th, 2004 - By Connie Gore ADDISON, TX-Colonial Properties Trust has scored an off-market coup by picking up 90% of the 380,000-sf Village on the Parkway from locally based Dunhill Partners. Sources are pegging the class A sale in the $60-million range. The 94%-leased retail asset at 5100 Belt Line Rd. marks the Birmingham, AL-based REIT's first purchase in Dallas/Fort Worth and its fourth acquisition in Texas. "We do like Texas," says Sandra Lee Robertson, Colonial Properties' senior vice president. She tells that the quietly orchestrated deal went start to finish in just a few months as the REIT zeroed in the opportunities accompanying the exchange. "We've got a great tenant mix," she quickly adds, "but there is opportunity to improve that." Aside from the tenant roster, there also are 4.8 acres of raw land that most sources around town are betting were included in the sale. In putting together the winning deal, the Dallas-based Retail Connection picked up a vested interest in the asset. Mike Ablon, president of Connected Acquisition Services for Dallas-based Retail Connection, and Alan Shor, the firm's president and co-chairman, negotiated the trade. Ablon did not return telephone calls by publication time for comment on the transaction; Shor is out of town until next week. Colonial's Robertson confirms the REIT pocketed 90% of the asset. Dunhill Partners, led by Bill Hutchinson, bought the Village in May 2000, securing a $38.4-million loan with Secore Financial Corp. of Waltham, MA, according to local sources. The 25.8-acre center was developed between 1979 and 2000, the bulk rising in the early 1980s. Dallas County assesses the center at $37.3 million and values the two vacant parcels at a combined $4 million. Comparable properties in the metroplex are bringing $160 per sf to $200 per sf, according to local market watchers. According to Robertson, the REIT plans to use an in-house team to manage and lease the lifestyle center at the junction of Belt Line Road and Dallas North Tollway. Anchored by a 127,500-sf Bed, Bath & Beyond, the roster also includes 24 Hour Fitness, Fitz & Floyd, TGI Fridays and Blue Mesa Grill. Colonial Properties owns partial interest in 10 properties, but this is a first for the Texas component. In Texas, the REIT owns the 555,161-sf Colonial Mall at 3111 S. 31st St. in Temple; 533-unit Colonial Village at Quarry Oaks at 6263 McNeil Dr. in Austin; 322-unit Colonial Village at Haverhill at 12222 Vance Jackson Rd. in San Antonio; and the 164,385-sf Kingwood Commons at 600 Kingwood Dr. near Houston, bought in April for $34.5 million.
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