City's tallest building on market since February
The Hertz Investment Group, a California-based real estate investment and management group that focuses on downtown revitalization, is expected to buy the Bank of America Tower soon, possibly by the end of next week.
Sources knowledgeable about the deal, but who declined to comment publicly because they are not authorized to discuss it, said Wednesday that the 42-story Downtown Northbank tower is under contract to the California company.
Hertz Investment Group Executive Vice President James Ingram, the chief investment officer, declined comment, citing a confidentiality agreement.
The sales price is speculated to be $85 million to $90 million. That would be in line with the recent sale of the nearby Wells Fargo Center. The 37-story center, built in 1975, sold for $75 million. That works out to be about 129 percent of its Duval County 2014 market value in progress of $58.23 million.
If the Bank of America Tower sold at 129 percent of its Duval County Property Appraiser’s 2014 market value of $65.55 million, it would bring almost $85 million.
The Bank of America Tower is newer, built in 1990, and larger, with 696,000 square feet of space. Wells Fargo Center was built in 1975 and has 650,000 square feet. However, the Bank of America Tower occupancy is lower, at 71 percent, than Wells Fargo Center, at 89 percent.
Jacksonville Tower Associates LLC, in care of Miami-based Parmenter Realty Partners, is selling the building. Jeffrey Morris, managing director of the Capital Markets Group for JLL Americas Inc., is representing the ownership group. Morris declined comment.
Real estate sources said in mid-June the deal was expected to close within a month. The Bank of America Tower at 50 N. Laura St., Jacksonville’s tallest building, has been for sale at least since February. It last sold in 1999 for $74.7 million
A third Downtown tower — the 33-story EverBank Center — also is for sale.
The Hertz Investment Group says on its hertzgroup.com site that it is based in Santa Monica and specializes in the acquisition, marketing and management of “exceptional” real estate properties with a special emphasis on downtown revitalization.
The privately held company owns and manages more than 45 major urban properties, representing more than 13 million square feet of office space in the central business districts of 14 U.S. cities in 10 states.
The website says Judah Hertz founded the group in the late 1970s and has acquired and managed more than 100 properties throughout the United States.
Hertz Investment Group’s 45 current properties listed on its website include several Class A high-rise office buildings in New Orleans, including the 39-story Energy Centre and 27-story Poydras Center; the 20-story Market Square in Indianapolis; the 25-story Regions Bank Tower and its parking garage in Shreveport, La.; and three St. Louis properties —the 31-story Laclede Gas Building, the 21-story Equitable Building and the 22-story Bank of America Tower.
The website says the group has created a record of “astute” investments by “recognizing the benefits of historic preservation, conservation and adaptive reuse, and moving swiftly to take advantage of rare opportunities.
It says it has revitalized some of Los Angeles’ “most cherished buildings,” including the Wiltern Center, the Oviatt Building, and the Park Plaza Hotel.