Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Office Condos in Works for Greenleaf Building; Interest Is Growing in Businesses Looking to Buy, Rather Than Lease

Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Office Condos in Works for Greenleaf Building; Interest Is Growing in Businesses Looking to Buy, Rather Than Lease

Article excerpt

Byline: CHRISTOPHER CALNAN, Times-Union staff

The potential new owner of the downtown Greenleaf Building plans to convert the upper nine floors of the building into office condominiums, a real estate broker marketing the property said.

Michael Lucas, vice president of Addison Commercial Real Estate, said the full-floor condominiums would sell for at least $787,500. Lucas is marketing the building to public relations firms, engineering firms, architects, law firms and accounting firms.

He's already shown the building to at least 12 interested groups.

"We're looking for a small portion of the market interested in owning rather than leasing," Lucas said.

He declined to identify the new owner or the sale price of the12-story building at Adams and Laura streets. The sale is expected to close by March, Lucas said.

Office condominiums differ from conventional offices in that they're owned rather than leased by their tenants.

The Greenleaf Building was built in 1927. Jacobs Jewelers operates on its ground floor.

The building has been largely empty since the anchor tenant, the Foley & Lardner law firm, moved out in June. Its ownership reverted back to the holder of the mortgage, Allied Capital Corp., in July.

Allied says the property is under a purchase contract while the interested buyer performs his due diligence. Allied Vice President Michael Greenblatt declined to provide any other details about the matter.

Terry Lorince, executive director of the Downtown Vision Inc., said the new owner would sell the project as nine full-floor condominiums of 4,600 square feet apiece. The Greenleaf Building is one of the best historically preserved buildings downtown, she said.

"It just reeks quality," she said, "and I believe that's the type of tenant they're looking for."

Two other office condominium projects have done well downtown, Lorrince said.

"It gives you a chance to enter the market at a price you can afford," she said. "Do I think it will do well? Absolutely. You can't beat the area."

Lucas said just one other downtown building has been sold as office condomiums, the Blackstone Building. …

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