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Alexandria Real Estate Equities pays $526M for Greater Boston campus

Alexandria Real Estate Equities Inc. said it closed the $525.5 million purchase of the Arsenal on the Charles campus in the Cambridge/Inner Suburbs submarket of Greater Boston in December 2019.

The property offers 834,782 operating rentable square feet and has an operating occupancy of 100% on 681,625 square feet, including 154,855 square feet that would be redeveloped into office/laboratory space upon expiration of existing leases in the near term. The campus has 153,157 square feet of empty space that the company expects to redevelop into laboratory space and a further 200,000 square feet of future development potential.

Also in December 2019, Alexandria paid $291.0 million to acquire two office buildings totaling 478,000 rentable square feet in the Greater Stanford submarket of San Francisco. The properties at 3825 and 3875 Fabian Way have 100% operating occupancy and remaining lease terms of two and 10 years, respectively.

Additionally, Alexandria said it has letters of intent and/or is under contracts to buy one 510,000-square-foot property with operating occupancy of 99% in the Greater Boston market for $235.0 million; the Mercer Mega Block, totaling 800,000 developable square feet, in Seattle's Lake Union submarket for $143.0 million; and two properties totaling 220,000 rentable square feet with operating occupancy of 88% in the San Diego market for $102.3 million.

Other pending acquisitions include a 138,000-square-foot property with operating occupancy of 100% in the San Francisco market for $157.5 million, as well as one land parcel totaling 700,000 developable square feet in the same market for $120.0 million.

The company previously issued 7.0 million common shares to settle its remaining outstanding forward equity sales agreements, receiving $981.3 million in net proceeds in December 2019. It used the proceeds to finance construction projects during the second half of 2019 and to fund acquisitions completed before December 2019.

In the first quarter, the urban office real estate investment trust expects to create a consolidated real estate joint venture in the San Francisco market, aiming for a 50% ownership stake. Upon closing, the REIT's ownership stake in the venture is expected to be 44%.

The REIT also updated its guidance for the 2019 full year, including a $610 million increase in acquisitions, and its guidance for the 2020 full year, including a $500 million increase in real estate sales, partial interest sales, and common equity, and a 1.0% drop in occupancy for North American operating assets.