Continental Grand Plaza II, First New Class A Office Building in El Segundo Since Recession, "Tops Out"

12/03/1998 Category: Leasing and Development

Milestone for first joint venture between Highridge Partners and Mack-Cali Realty Corporation

EL SEGUNDO, Calif.--December 3, 1998--Evidence that Southern California's former aerospace hub has made a strong recovery is the "topping out" of the $50 million Continental Grand Plaza II, the first new speculative class A office building to go up in El Segundo since early this decade.

The six-story, 237,000 square-foot building is the first project of a partnership formed by Los Angeles-based Highridge Partners and Mack-Cali Realty Corporation (NYSE:CLI), one of the country's largest and most prestigious real estate investment trusts (REIT). Highridge Partners, a real estate investment company with a track record of identifying and building value, bought the fully entitled 4.17-acre site along with an adjoining six-story office building in 1991.

"We are excited to have reached this construction milestone so quickly," said Jack Mahoney, president of Highridge Partners' development arm, Summit Commercial Properties. "There is strong demand for office space in this area, and we plan to be open and ready to meet that demand by June of 1999."

Continental Grand Plaza II features fiber optics capability and state-of-the-art technology, all necessary elements to serve the high tech and media companies locating within the Los Angeles Coastal Business Corridor. Mahoney noted that much of the space occupied by aerospace and defense companies ten years ago now houses companies that make up Los Angeles' new economy such as telecommunications, technology, electronics, and international trade.

Continental Grand II is the cornerstone of the Highridge-Mack-Cali partnership to develop in infill, niche markets in Southern California. In June, the two companies formed a joint venture development partnership to initially develop four office and office/flex properties totaling 369,000 square feet in Southern California. Highridge and Mack-Cali are employing a research-driven strategy to determine supply/demand ratios in key sub-markets from which it will then target specific development opportunities. The analysis encompasses market conditions, demographics, historic cycles and competitive factors. The Continental Grand II is the first development in this joint venture.

Highridge has selected CB Commercial Real Estate Group to direct leasing at Continental Grand Plaza II. The general contractor is a joint venture of Peck /Jones and OCAmerica Construction.

Mack-Cali Realty Corporation is a fully integrated, self-administered, self-managed real estate investment trust (REIT) providing leasing, management, acquisition, development, construction and tenant-related services for its portfolio. With the completion of the company's pending transactions, Mack-Cali will own 255 properties, primarily office and office/flex buildings totaling approximately 28.1 million square feet and serving over 2,300 tenants. Mack-Cali's properties are located in 11 states, primarily in the Northeast, as well as the Southwest and West.

Closely held Highridge Partners has acquired, developed and managed a real estate portfolio valued at more than $2.5 billion in the past decade. It operates through three core business groups: a Commercial Group that includes Summit Commercial Properties and Metropolitan Development which acquire and develop office, industrial, R&D, retail and redevelopment projects; Haverford Financial Group that provides financial services and opportunistic capital; and a Housing and Leisure Group that includes Western Pacific Housing, Marignan Immobilier Investissements (a French housing company), and Alpine R.V. Resorts.