Ironton Custom House LLC, the buyer of the post office in downtown St. Paul, acknowledged CBRE's role in the sale of the building in a news release Tuesday. Ironton Custom House, of course, is an entity linked to St. Paul-based Exeter Realty Group and developer Jim Stolpestad. CBRE represented the U.S. Postal Service, the seller of the property.

The sale of the post office and custom house at 180 Kellogg Boulevard closed on Aug. 16. There were five bidders for the property, and Ironton won out with a $5.25 million bid. (That's a bit more than the $5 million asking price by the Postal Service.)

In a statement, Stolpestad lauded the work of CBRE brokers Joe Hughes and Jerry Driessen who "handled the sale fairly and professionally."

The building's new owner plans to convert it into at least 250 market-rate apartments, parking, and "other uses yet to be determined." The building has been renamed Custom House.

St. Paul Mayor Chris Coleman said Stolpestad and his team have “a proven track record of taking historically significant buildings and reshaping them for the 21st century”. He noted, “their vision for the Post Office will continue to help shape the Lowertown neighborhood and the city of St. Paul for years to come.”

Ironton Custom House LLC is affiliated with Ironton Asset Fund LLC, which was organized in 2009 by Exeter Realty Group to acquire distressed and undervalued real estate. Over the last 22 years, Exeter entities have been extensively involved in office, retail, residential, and mixed-use development projects in the Twin Cities area. They include C&E Lofts Historic Apartments, Grand Place (the Pottery Barn building on Grand Av.), Highland Crossing, which is anchored by the Barnes & Noble store, and Victoria Crossing, anchored by Bread and Chocolate -- all in St. Paul, among others.

Janet Moore covers commercial real estate for the Star Tribune.


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