A buyer emerges for City Center City Center ready to be sold

  • Article by: JANET MOORE , Star Tribune
  • Updated: October 10, 2012 - 1:52 PM

The shopping mall and its 33 South Sixth office tower are to be acquired by a San Francisco firm.

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The 50-story 33 South Sixth tower was bracketed Tuesday by two of its downtown Minneapolis neighbors, Wells Fargo Center, left, and the IDS Center.

Photo: Jeff Wheeler, Star Tribune

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One of downtown Minneapolis' signature buildings -- 33 South Sixth/City Center -- is slated to be sold for approximately $207 million, the Star Tribune has learned.

Located at Nicollet Mall and S. 6th Street, the 50-story office-retail-hotel complex is expected to be sold to Shorenstein Properties, a San Francisco-based real estate firm, according to a source familiar with the deal.

Although Shorenstein owns and manages 21.5 million square feet of office properties valued at $6.7 billion nationwide, the company does not have any local properties in the Twin Cities market now. In the 1990s, Shorenstein bought and sold LaSalle Plaza in downtown Minneapolis. Shorenstein representatives declined to comment on the 33 South Sixth matter.

The seller of 33 South Sixth -- the city's fourth-tallest building -- is Brookfield Properties, long a major player in Twin Cities' commercial real estate circles. In 2009, Brookfield announced it was selling its holdings in Minneapolis, which also includes RBC Plaza and Gaviidae I and II, although the firm has never indicated publicly why it is exiting the market.

Neither David Sternberg, senior vice president of Brookfield's Minneapolis office, nor its real estate adviser, Stephen Livaditis, from the Chicago office of Eastdil Secured, could be reached for comment Tuesday.

The 33 South Sixth complex is anchored by the three-story shopping mall, City Center, which counts stores Office Depot, Marshalls, Brooks Brothers, Len Druskin and restaurants Rosa Mexicano and Fogo de Chao as major tenants, among others. In 2005, City Center was renovated in a project that involved a $15 million investment. Today, City Center is about 83 percent occupied.

33 South Sixth, once known as the International Multifoods Tower, was put on the market by Brookfield in 2011.

The office tower encompasses about 1.1 million square feet and is primarily occupied by the technology group of Target Corp. Other major office tenants include Personnel Decisions International, a global human resources firm, as well as several law firms. The occupancy rate of the building's office space is about 97 percent.

The building is also ground zero for the city's famed skyway system -- more than 50,000 visitors pass through its six skyway connections daily.

The 583-room Marriott City Center is on the site, but only the land under the hotel is included in the deal. The Marriott's lease expires in 2036, and the hotel recently completed a $30 million renovation.

In addition, the property includes a 687-space parking facility for tenants and shoppers.

Janet Moore • 612-673-7752

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