Advance Realty Group Reports Banner Year In 2004
Having celebrated its 25th year in business this past year, Advance Realty Group reported one of its most successful years in its history. The Company signed over 600,000 square feet of leases in 2004, acquired over $140 million of new properties, made $13.3 million of investments in its existing properties and substantially strengthened its management team.
Greg Senkevitch, COO, commented, “2004 was a highly successful year in terms of executing transactions, and in positioning our company for future growth. With strong leasing results for 2004, we believe market fundamentals support our buying $200 million of value-added properties in the coming year. We also expect to commence construction on 1,400 residential units and 250,000 square feet of commercial properties in 2005. Our investment strategy is to source special situations and off-market opportunities in both suburban and urban locations. We are confident we have the people, platform and capital in place to increase our holdings throughout the Northeast.”
Highlights recorded by Advance Realty Group in 2004 include:
Advance acquired its partner’s interests in Park Place at Florham Park, New Jersey. Advance Realty Group paid approximately $80 million to acquire the interests of its pension fund advisory partner for the remaining Park Place interests. Advance utilized internally generated funds to complete this transaction. Park Place consists of a total of 350,000 square feet in four, three-story Class A office buildings. Formerly the world headquarters of ExxonMobil International, Advance completely redeveloped the complex into a state-of-the-art, first-class, multi-tenant campus.
Advance also acquired 4500 Forbes Boulevard in Lanham, Maryland. Advance purchased the four-story, 65,000-square foot, Class A office building from Moore and Associates, making this is Advance’s second acquisition in the D.C. market in 2004.
Advance attained two, two-story office buildings totaling 143,000 square feet at Avion Business Park in Chantilly, Virginia. The newest acquisitions of Midrise III and IV bring Advance’s total ownership at Avion Business Park, a 188-acre Class A office campus, to nine buildings, totaling 730,000 square feet.
In January 2004, the company acquired 100 Tice Boulevard in Woodcliff Lake, NJ. This development site can accommodate 210,000 square feet of Class A, headquarters-quality office space. Approvals are in place to immediately commence construction.
Odyssey Pharmaceuticals, Inc., a pharmaceutical production company, signed a significant 51,000-square-foot lease at Advance Realty Group’s 200 Park Place facility.
Lehman Brothers’ wholly owned mortgage banking subsidiary, Aurora Loan Services, Inc. also signed a significant lease for 45,809 square feet at 230 Park Place in Florham Park, New Jersey.
A new lease with Whatman, Inc., a global leader in separations technology, was executed at 200 Park Place. This 25,740-square-foot office space will become the global operational headquarters for Whatman, in addition to its current corporate headquarters located in the United Kingdom.
Altana Pharma, a multi-national pharmaceutical company, has established its U.S. headquarters at Park Place. During 2004, Altana expanded its occupancy at Park Place, and now leases a combined total of 118,633 square feet at 210 and 220 Park Avenue.
In 2004, Advance also announced the completion of a multimillion dollar repositioning of One Gateway Center in Newark, New Jersey. The landmark mixed-use office and retail complex was acquired by Advance Realty Group in late 2002, and this endeavor is one of the largest and most important re-investment projects ever completed in Newark. Designed by the Grad Partnership, the dramatic new lobbies and enhanced retail space at One Gateway creates a bold, exciting and vibrant point of entry into the complex while also significantly upgrading the retail space to attract a higher end and more diverse mix of tenancy.
Advance Realty Group also completed a major lobby renovation program at the east wing lobby of 8301 Professional Place at Metro East Business Campus in Landover, MD. The new finishes package, designed by DBI Architects, includes a patterned multi-color granite floor, faux finish accent wall incorporated into a dramatic wall system with reveals, mahogany accent panels all highlighted by architectural light pendants. 8301 Professional Place is one of nine buildings that Advance Realty Group owns in Metro East Business Campus.
As owners and managers of Class A commercial properties throughout the Northeast, Advance Realty Group proudly accepts the responsibility of Corporate Citizenship. Helping to enhance the social well-being and enrich the cultural life of the communities in which we live and work, remains their steadfast and enduring commitment.
Current Advance Realty Group developments underway include:
Harrison MetroCentre, a 135-acre site along the Passaic River, which will ultimately consist of 2.5 million square feet of office space, one million square feet of retail, and approximately 3,500 residential units, in Harrison, New Jersey.
The 3.5 million square foot campus for Sarnoff Corporation in West Windsor, New Jersey, which sits on a 332-acre property. The Sarnoff Technology Campus will ultimately comprise laboratories and offices, a 200-room conference center, retail services, a residential component and other amenities. The campus will foster technology transfer between Sarnoff Corporation, America’s largest, private sector non-profit think tank, Princeton University and private corporations.
Commitment to Tenants
In 2004, the Company’s Advance at Bedminster II property was recognized by The Building Owners and Managers Association with the prestigious International Office Building of the Year (TOBY) Award. The TOBY recognizes Advance for both the development of a superior corporate facility as well as consistently delivering a first-class workplace environment.
During 2004, Advance’s tenant satisfaction scores increased substantially. Over ninety percent of its portfolio in the Northeast has been recognized by an independent national tenant survey as “First in Class” properties, indicating their superior tenant service levels.
And finally, Advance made the ultimate commitment to tenant service in 2004 by introducing the real estate industry’s first ever “Tenants’ Bill of Rights.” The Bill of Rights redoubles Advance’s commitment to “First in Class” tenant service throughout the Company. The “Tenants’ Bill of Rights” is prominently displayed in all Advance’s buildings and is included of each of the Company’s leases.
This past year Advance Realty Foundation contributed 25, $1,000 scholarships to New Jersey’s higher education institutions, in addition to specific students from the Towns of Harrison and Bound Brook. Advance Realty Foundation also supports hundreds of local and statewide charities. Advance Realty Foundation was formed in 2001 to improve education and educational opportunities, preserve arts and history, positively effect today’s youth and families, especially at-risk and minority groups, and enhance economic opportunities for at-risk and urban populations.
Additionally, Advance Realty Foundation made a five-year commitment to young musicians through its grant to the New Jersey Performing Arts Center’s Teen Jazz Ensemble. The contribution will fund the NJPAC Teen Jazz Ensemble Scholarship
Program. NJPAC’s successful Jazz For Teens program is comprised of 82 students representing 53 municipalities and 14 counties in New Jersey and New York.
In 2004, Advance unveiled a dramatic, secco-designed, 16’ by 9’ mural within the lobby of One Gateway. Commissioned by Advance Realty Group, Andrea Heinisch, a renowned artist from Florence, Italy, along with three other prominent artists, used a secco, meaning “dry” in Italian, technique which utilizes mineral and earth pigments. This dramatic fresco, titled the “Ideal City,” was the vision of Peter J. Cocoziello, president and CEO of Advance Realty Group, whose inspiration was to create a work of art that symbolizes the best of what the City of Newark represents. Designed by the Grad Partnership, the dramatic new lobbies and enhanced retail space at One Gateway, creates a bold, exciting and vibrant point of entry into the complex while also significantly upgrading the retail space to attract a higher end and more diverse mix of tenancy.
Advance Realty Group is an owner and developer of office, flex, industrial, retail and multifamily properties. With five million square feet of operating properties and a development portfolio consisting of eight million square feet of commercial projects and 9,400 residential units, Advance is one of the leading real estate owners in the Northeast and is headquartered in Bedminster, New Jersey.
For more information, contact Advance Realty Group at (908) 719-3000 or visit www.advancerealtygroup.com.