Wednesday, February 29, 2012

East European investors buy vacant Dallas skyscraper


The former First National Bank tower opened its doors in 1965.
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Downtown Dallas’ former First National Bank tower, vacant for more than a year, has been sold to an investor who hopes to renovate the skyscraper.
The 52-story office building at 1401 Elm St. had been up for sale by lenders who took control of the property and investors. Terms of the deal were not disclosed.
The last tenants moved out of the 45-year-old tower in early 2010.
Since then, Colliers International has been trying to find a buyer for the 1.3 million-square-foot tower, which had a price tag of $19 million.
A group of Eastern European investors headed by Turkish developer Mukemmel Sarimsakci bought the empty skyscraper with hopes of redeveloping the building.
“It took a while, but we finally got it sold,” said Colliers’ David Glasscock, who negotiated the sale with Jim Sobel, also of Colliers. “The sale just closed.”
The new owners, in a presentation almost two weeks ago to the city of Dallas, said they plan to spend about $125 million to convert the empty high-rise to offices, apartments and retail space.
If the plan goes forward, the city might contribute $30 million in tax increment financing assistance.
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