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In The Pipeline: CoStar Development & Construction News for Jan. 13 - 20

News, Notes and Comments on New Projects, Trends and Construction In the Commercial Real Estate Development and Planning Pipeline Around the U.S.
January 13, 2014

Comcast to Build $1.2B Skyscraper in Philadelphia

Comcast Corp., which just five years ago completed and occupied Comcast Center, the tallest building in Pennsylvania, has announced plans for an even taller tower across the street.

The project reunites Comcast with Liberty Property Trust (NYSE: LRY) to jointly develop the $1.2 billion Comcast Innovation and Technology Center on the 1800 block of Arch Street in the city's Market Street West submarket. The proposed 59-story, 1,121-foot tower, designed by British architect Norman Foster, would shoot nearly 150 feet higher than neighboring Comcast Center, the company's global headquarters, itself one of the tallest buildings in the country outside of New York City and Chicago.

In The Pipeline is a column on significant acquisitions of commercial land for sale, and other transactions and trends affecting office, industrial, flex, multifamily, mixed-use, hotel and public works developers. Send us news leads about your new commercial real estate project -- and sign up to be added to our distribution list to receive future In the Pipeline columns by e-mail.

In a statement, Comcast said the tower would become a dedicated home for the company’s "growing workforce of technologists, engineers, and software architects," as well as the base of operations of local broadcast television stations NBC 10/WCAU and Telemundo 62/WWSI. Comcast would also offer space for local technology startups.

Targeting LEED Platinum certification, the glass-and-stainless steel tower will encompass more than 1.5 million rentable square feet and include a new Four Seasons hotel.

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Expanding Hat Maker Gives Tip 'O the Lid to Hoosier Business Climate

Hat World, Inc., a retailer and manufacturer of hats and sports apparel, will expand its headquarters and distribution operations in central Indiana.

The company, which does business as LIDS Sports Group, will spend $21.77 million to build and equip a 150,000-square-foot headquarters office at the Creekside Corporate Park in Zionsville, IN.

The company will also lease more than 600,000 square feet of additional warehouse space in Indianapolis. The expansion will create up to 758 new jobs over the next 11 years, according to a release by Gov. Mike Pence.

There's apparently been no lid on Hat World's growth over the last decade. The company has more than 1,000 employees in Indiana and more than 9,000 retail employees across the U.S., Canada and Puerto Rico.

The company now operates out of 225,000 square feet of leased space in Park 100 and another 285,000 leased square feet on 76th street on the northwest side of Indianapolis. It will begin relocating its headquarters to Zionsville and filling 300 new administrative, finance, human resource and business development positions in late 2015 or early 2016.

Hat World, an Indiana-based company since opening its first store in Lafayette in 1995, also plans to begin hiring new manufacturing, distribution and warehouse workers in Indianapolis in the third quarter of this year.

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Mack-Cali Venture Begins NJ's Tallest Residential Tower

A joint venture of Mack-Cali Realty Corp. (NYSE: CLI) and Ironstate Development Co. broke ground on URL (Urban Ready Living) Harborside 1, a 69-story, 763-unit multifamily tower on Jersey City's waterfront.

The $291 million development, the first of an anticipated three towers comprising 2,358 residences in the Harborside development, is expected to be completed in mid-2016.

"Not only will this be the tallest residential building in the state, the project also incorporates sustainability elements and develops a community-style concept through public spaces," said Jersey City Mayor Steven Fulop, on hand Tuesday to announce the groundbreaking.

Jersey City currently has approximately 5,000 residential units under construction, with another 12,000 approved units in the pipeline, with work expected to begin on more than half of them this year.

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Marriott Opens Tallest Hotel in North America

Marriott International, Inc. and G Holdings have officially opened the $308 million Courtyard-Residence Inn Central Park, with a combined 378-room Courtyard hotel and 261-suite Residence Inn in Midtown Manhattan.

At 68 stories, the hotel at 1717 Broadway is the tallest single-use hotel in North America. The tower near Central Park and Times Square was built and is owned by G Holdings and managed by Interstate Hotels & Resorts.

The Courtyard by Marriott is housed on floors 6-33 while The Residence Inn hotel is located on floors 37-65.

G Holdings is led by developer Harry Gross and his sons Ron and Etai. The family has completed ground-up construction of five Marriott-branded hotels in New York City, with a sixth Marriott hotel under way.

Trammell Crow Acquires, Breaks Ground On 1.6M-SF Project

By Bryce Meyers

Los Angeles-based Trammell Crow Co. will undertake one of the largest speculative industrial projects in its history following the acquisition of a 314.4-acre site at the northwest corner of I-35W and Eagle Parkway in northeast Fort Worth, TX.

Construction on the 1.6 million-square-foot Trammell Crow 35/Eagle project is currently underway with a completion date set for 2014. A full build-out of the park will consist of more than 4.2 million square feet of office, retail and industrial space.

Proposals for the park include two industrial buildings totaling more than 1.5 million square feet of Class A office space. Ownership will look to secure LEED® certification for both facilities.

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Financing In Place for L.A. 'Clean-Tech' Development

U.S. Bank has provided $14 million in New Markets Tax Credit (NMTC) financing, providing the green light to development of the La Kretz Innovation Campus at 5th and Hewitt Streets in Los Angeles.

The campus is slated to open in early 2015.

A group of Los Angeles nonprofits, utilities and universities hopes to position the campus as the hub for a new "Cleantech Corridor" in the city.

According to reports conducted for the Los Angeles Cleantech Incubator, the campus’ anchor tenant, the project is expected to incubate up to 40 clean technology companies and create 600 direct jobs.

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Tribeca Condo Development Wins Commission Approval

The New York City Landmarks Preservation Commission has approved development of a five-unit condominium project one of east Tribeca’s oldest landmarked buildings, now dubbed 6 Cortlandt Alley.

A joint venture of Megalith Capital Management and Imperial Development Group will develop the project, part of a rapid transformation of the Broadway corridor in eastern Tribeca, said Vishal Arora of Megalith.

The developer will convert the building at 372 Broadway constructed in 1915 into five luxury loft condominiums with 3- and 4-bedroom luxury floor-through and penthouse units with outdoor space, said Ryan Kaplan of Imperial.

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