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Apple store up for sale in Chicago; Partners REIT looking to sell 11 properties

Commercial real estate

* Walton Street Capital LLC is placing the Apple Store building in Chicago on the market, expecting up to $175 million for the asset, The Wall Street Journal reported, citing people familiar with the offering. The company had acquired the property, along with a 35-story neighboring office and retail building, for $370 million in 2017, the publication noted.

The 20,000-square-foot Apple Inc. store opened in October 2017. It is up for sale along with 10,000 square feet of retail space in the neighboring building at 401 N. Michigan Ave. Walton intends to retain the office space.

* Partners Real Estate Investment Trust has retained BMO Capital Markets to sell up to 11 of its 34 properties, with the expected proceeds marked for debt reduction and capital investments in its remaining properties.

The properties being offered for sale by the Canadian retail REIT are in British Columbia, Alberta and Manitoba. They represent roughly 30% of the REIT's assets based on book value and 29% of its net operating income in 2017.

* Facebook Inc. is in advanced negotiations to lease roughly 122,000 square feet at the Brickyard office campus in Los Angeles' Playa Vista neighborhood, The Real Deal reported, citing unnamed sources. Tishman Speyer owns the roughly 425,300-square-foot campus.

The report noted that Facebook already has a 50,000-square-foot presence at another building in the neighborhood.

* First Industrial Realty Trust Inc. is planning a $52 million speculative warehouse project in southwest Dallas spanning more than one million square feet, The Dallas Morning News reported. The 82-acre project would be south of the Mountain Creek business park that houses distribution centers for a number of companies.

Citing filings with Dallas' economic development department, the publication noted that the developer is seeking a property tax abatement for the project, but would not receive incentives until half of the project is leased.

* The Maryland state Senate approved a tax incentives package aimed at winning Amazon.com Inc.'s search for a second headquarters, the Washington Business Journal reported. Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan indicated that the package is worth $3 billion, but budget analysts estimate the package's worth at roughly $5.6 billion through 2054, the report noted.

The report also pointed out that the state is mulling $2 billion in transportation-related enhancements to attract Amazon.

* Google Inc.'s recently closed $2.4 billion acquisition of the Chelsea Market building in Manhattan, N.Y., was an all-cash transaction that did not involve any debt, The Real Deal reported, citing unnamed sources.

* Jamestown, the seller of the 1.2 million square-foot Chelsea Market building, is retaining the Chelsea Market name's branding rights and intellectual property outside of Manhattan and plans to replicate the development in other U.S. cities as well as in Europe, the Journal reported, citing Michael Phillips, Jamestown president and a principal. Phillips said the company, which has been scouting locations, hopes to announce at least one and possibly two new Chelsea Market projects in 2018.

Jamestown has an approach to office design that views tenants as part of communities, emphasizing location and amenities to appeal to younger workers, the report noted. The trend began in co-working businesses and has now spread to big landlords and employers, the publication pointed out.

* Boston Properties Inc. leased 25,089 square feet at its 399 Park Ave. building in Manhattan to Owl Rock Capital Partners, the New York Post reported. The property is in the midst of a $120 million renovation that is 95% complete, the report noted. Owl Rock is relocating from 245 Park Ave.

* Retail chain Bandier has leased 27,500 square feet at Paramount Group Inc.'s 670 Broadway property in Manhattan's Noho neighborhood for its new U.S. flagship location, The Real Deal reported, citing unnamed sources.

The five-story office and retail building totals 75,000 square feet. Paramount acquired the building for $112 million in 2015 when it was mostly vacant and had been trying to sell it for several months in 2017 for about $160 million, the report noted.

* The Real Deal reported on real estate industry heads' remarks on a number of topics at the NYU Schack Institute of Real Estate's annual REIT Symposium. Brookfield Property Partners LP Chairman Ric Clark referred to New York office landlords' urgency to renovate their buildings to appeal to millennial tenants as "a nuclear arms race."

The CEOs of Boston Properties, VEREIT Inc., Regency Centers Corp. and Empire State Realty Trust Inc. also shared the stage with Clark.

* Dutch pension fund manager PGGM acquired a 30% stake in the 21 West End Ave. apartment tower in Manhattan in a deal that values the property at $650 million, The Real Deal reported, citing Real Estate Alert. The stake was sold by Carlyle Group and Greenfield Partners.

The remaining 70% interest in the 616-unit tower is owned by Dermot Co. and AFL-CIO Building Investment Trust, which developed the property. The property, which commenced leasing in August 2016, is 95% occupied. The deal is PGGM's first direct real estate investment in New York.

* The Massachusetts Mutual Life Insurance Co. obtained a $155 million mortgage from ING Capital to refinance its 555 W. 42nd St. property in the Hell's Kitchen neighborhood of Manhattan, The Real Deal reported, citing documents filed with the city. The 44-story tower has 418 apartments and eight commercial units.

* The Housing Authority of Baltimore City and a team of private developers plan to redevelop a roughly 200-acre stretch in east Baltimore between Harbor East and Johns Hopkins Hospital in a $1 billion project, the Baltimore Business Journal reported. The development would require more than 1,300 housing units and a school to be demolished.

The development would include up to 2,500 residential units and a new public park.

Work could commence in a year if a $30 million federal housing grant is awarded in upcoming months. A roughly $250 million tax increment financing package is also in the works, the report noted, citing an unnamed source close to the plans.

* Icon Co. has filed plans for a 675-unit residential complex at its mixed-use project in Los Angeles' Panorama City neighborhood, up from its previous filing that had 422 units, The Real Deal reported, citing a notice filed with the Department of City Planning. The $150 million development, named "The Icon at Panorama City," would span 675,000 square feet across four buildings.

The developer had initially planned to have 350 units and 250,000 square feet of commercial space in August 2016. It later increased the units to 422 and reduced commercial space to 200,000 square feet. The latest plans have further reduced the commercial component to 60,000 square feet, the report noted. The site holds a vacant department store and two other buildings. The nine-acre project is scheduled to complete in 2020.

After the bell

* Simon Property Group Inc. Executive Vice President and CFO Andrew Juster will retire at the end of 2018.

The day ahead

Early morning futures indicators pointed to a mixed opening for the U.S. market.

In Asia, the Hang Seng fell 0.43% to 31,414.52, and the Nikkei 225 was down 0.47% to 21,380.97.

In Europe, as of midday, the FTSE 100 was down 0.37% to 7,034.84, and the Euronext 100 had fallen 0.01% to 1,024.89.

On the macro front

The MBA mortgage applications report, the current account report, the existing home sales report, the EIA petroleum status report, the FOMC meeting announcement and the FOMC Forecasts are due out today.

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