By Joe Clements

NEWTON—KS Partners has selected Boston Realty Advisors as exclusive agent to divest Paragon Towers, declared “the most iconic office building in Newton” by BRA Senior Partner Jeremy A. Freid, SIOR, an assessment he would seem well-qualified to make as a Route 128 Central specialist leading a team featuring colleagues Douglas Adamian, Adam T. Meixner and Jordan B. Sneider.

More so, Freid and Meixner have been advising KS Partners as leasing agents of the multi-tenanted 67,000-sf building since 2009, helping the landlord retain a healthy occupancy level through varied market ups and downs recorded during the landlord’s tenure which dates to its $11.5 million purchase 10 years ago this month.

Being launched this week minus an asking price, 233 Needham St.’s quality and a clamor for commercial assets inside Route 128 could push the outcome near or above $270 per sf, according to industry professionals familiar with the asset, meaning a trade in the $18-million range if it does. While declining to discuss pricing allocations, Freid deems the building one “with a really good story” for investors and maintains it is poised to enjoy continued income growth as existing leases expire.

“It has a great owner who does an excellent job (retaining) tenants and who has made some very smart improvements to the building,” Freid relays of the firm led by Kambiz Shahbazi and its five-story building that turns 30 in 2018 perched at its one-acre home in the evolving Needham Street corridor. BRA is anticipating a series of infrastructure changes already easing traffic jams in and around Route 128 will further bolster Paragon Towers as an investment prospect, as will a surge of leasing activity across the inner suburbs thanks to metropolitan Boston’s solid economy and rent pressure being felt from the urban core forcing many companies to consider alternatives.

Among the improvements Freid says Paragon Towers has enjoyed under the KS realm are an extensive lobby renovation and other common area upgrades, while amenities in the building include a dining area and fitness center free to all occupants. Those commuting to the site which is close to Route 9 and the Massachusetts Turnpike have the added benefit of structured parking, notes Freid, an aspect especially welcomed during inclement conditions.

The diversity of Paragon Towers’ tenant situation should provide a measure of comfort to investors as well, opines Freid, pointing out its lack of an anchor reduces the chance of having a substantial block of Paragon Towers go dark at once, with the current constituency averaging between 2,000 and 6,000 sf. “You won’t ever have any major risk from the leasing,” he says, an outlook demonstrated in its even-keeled occupancy history during the KS tenure.

The suburban team is getting support from BRA’s Capital Markets platform led by founding principal Jason S. Weissman, and bidders participating in the open marketing program will also have access to debt and structured finance guidance from BRA principal Nicholas Herz plus insight from retail experts Michael A. d’Hemecourt and Whitney Gallivan for a corridor that has a growing level of retail activity. “We are ready to go,” Freid says of the Paragon Towers sales initiative, adding, “I think this is going to get a very positive response.”

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