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The 18-acre Northwest Portland property was purchased from the Bill Naito Co.

COURTESY: UNICO PROPERTIES - A joint venture between Unico Properties and Partners Group has acquired the Montgomery Park property, an 18-acre property that includes a nine-story, 745,000-square-foot office building originally construction in 1921 to serve as Montgomery Wards department store.

Montgomery Park, situated between Portland's Northwest Industrial District and the city's fast-growing Slabtown area, has a new owner.

Unico Properties LLC and Partners Group, in a joint venture partnership, have acquired the 18-acre property from the Bill Naito Co.

This is the second property that Unico and Partners Group, through their joint venture, have acquired from the Bill Naito Co. in recent months.

The Montgomery Park property, located along Northwest Vaughn Street, consists of a nine-story, 745,000 square-foot office building. The building currently is 94 percent leased, according to Unico. The tenant roster includes Adidas, Daimler Trucks North America, WebMD, OnPoint Community Credit Union, Wells Fargo and Kaiser Permanente. A highlight of the building, which was constructed in 1920 to serve as a Montgomery Ward's mail-order catalog warehouse and department store, is a full-height glass atrium in the middle of an 84,000-square-foot, U-shaped floorplate.

COURTESY: UNICO PROPERTIES - A highlight of the Montgomery Park main building is a full-height glass atrium in the center of an 804000-square-foot, U-shaped floorplate.

The property also contains a 335,000-square-foot historic warehouse and three acres of developable land able to accommodate more than 800,000 square feet of new development.

Unico and Partners Group have plans to redevelop existing portions of the site and develop other areas. Specific details and a timeline have not been identified; however, the size and scale of the property open up a range of options, according to Brian Pearce, executive vice president of real estate services for Unico Properties.

The Galleria and Montgomery Park purchases are in line with the goal of Partners Group and Unico to build a portfolio that offers both lease-up and development potential, Fabian Neuenschwander, co-head of Partners Group's Private Real Estate Americas Division, said.

The Northwest neighborhood where Montgomery Park is located is on the verge of a major transformation. Redfox Commons, located near Montgomery Park at the corner of Northwest Wilson Street and Northwest 27th Avenue, recently opened. The project is the result of an innovative renovation of two WWII-era warehouses joined by a glass central portion to create a single 60,000-square-foot structure. The building, designed by LEVER Architecture and built by R&H Construction, is owned by Langley Investment Partners. While the property is currently looking for tenants, the building has been designed as creative space, with the flexibility to serve a single tenant or multiple tenants.

The neighborhood also is home to the 22-acre site that formerly served as the home of ESCO. That property has been sold to group of investors and is expected to be developed or redeveloped in the future.

In addition, the area reportedly is on track to be served by an expansion of the Portland Streetcar system.

Downtown digs

In December, the Bill Naito Company sold the Galleria to the Unico and Partners Group joint venture. Built in 1910, the building at the corner of Southwest 10th Avenue and Southwest Morrison Street originally served as the home of Olds, Wortman & King department store. When it was constructed, it held the distinction of being the first store in the Northwest to occupy an entire block.

Sam and Bill Naito purchased the building in the mid 1970s, converting it into a multi-level shopping center and naming it The Galleria.

The five-story, 195,000 square-foot building in downtown Portland — which currently features office over street-level retail — is 46 percent leased, according to Unico. A Starbucks coffee shop fills some of the ground-floor space along Southwest 10th Avenue. On the upper floors, a City Target occupies 89,000 square feet of space while 106,000 square feet currently is unoccupied.

Unico and Partners Group plan to make "significant capital investments" to renovate and upgrade the existing office space and update the lobby area and common areas, according to the companies.

Graham Taylor and Charles Safley, both of CBRE, represented the Bill Naito Co. in the sales of both properties to Unico and Partners Group. Acquisition financing was handled by Nick Santangelo, also with CBRE.

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