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Latham Square, the long-dormant plaza at the intersection of Broadway and Telegraph Ave. in downtown Oakland, is back open after three years of construction.

Decked with flower beds, trees, a storm water drain system and a century-old fountain that spouts water for the first time in 75 years, the triangular piece of land is four times its original size.

Mayor Libby Schaaf touted the project as a public investment that enhances other improvements to the neighborhood, among them the restoration of Latham Square building and the former Roos Brothers department store at 1500 Broadway.

The new square is part of an ongoing beautification effort to draw more businesses and foot traffic downtown. Uber’s new headquarters will open just blocks away in 2017.


Fresh off of raising $40 million in venture capital funding, Visual Supply Co., known as VSCO, inked a deal to take 24,032 square feet in 1500 Broadway in Oakland.

“We strongly identify with Oakland, as it is an up-and-coming area that embodies the grit and creative spirit of VSCO,” said VSCO CEO Joel Flory, who helped start the business. “Our favorite art galleries, museums, restaurants and, of course, the A’s, call Oakland home. We are proud to be part of the creative culture of Oakland. Our roots run deep here.”

The building, owned by Graham Street Realty and managed by Paramount Property Company, features the “creative space” look with historic architecture and brick exterior that has been attractive to various Oakland tenants like e.l.f., a cosmestics that is also expanding in downtown Oakland.

Read more at San Francisco Business Times 

San Francisco-based Graham Street Realty has bought the 1355 Willow Way office building in Concord for $1.45 million below its $10 million appraised value.

“I think that this transaction turned out this way as the property has a great deal of deferred maintenance. We are planning on spending an additional $1.5 million above the purchased price to make improvements to the property. Most of this work will be with the exterior of the building. This will include repairing the rot on the exterior of the building and putting in a new roof. There will also be some work done to refurbish the lobby of the property,” says David Messing, a principal with Graham Street.

Graham Street is of the opinion that it will be able to add some value to the property in the future. “The rents in the property now are on average around 15 percent below market. We should be able to add some value in the future as our current tenants come up for renewal,” said Messing.

1355 Willow Way is an 84,715 square foot office building. The property was built in 1979. At the time the property was bought, the occupancy was ay 94 percent. One of the tenants in the property was the Contra Costa County Employees Retirement Association. The buyer estimates that the cap rate on its purchase was seven percent, based on the in-place rents of the property.

Graham Street likes the location of the Willow Way property and sees more opportunities in surrounding area. “We are in an area that has very strong retail amenities nearby, which includes the Willows Shopping Center and the CenterCal development, which will be starting soon,” said Messing. As The Registry reported in July of last year, El Segundo-baed CenterCal Properties purchased the 572,000 square foot redevelopment site located at 2001 Diamond Blvd. in Concord for $42 million.

Graham Street also recently bought the 43,033 square foot The Promenade in Berkeley for $13.4 million. The property is located at 1936 University Avenue. “We think that one of the interesting features of this property is that along with it [the property] includes a 120-space parking structure. There aren’t many office buildings in Berkeley that have this much parking associated with it. Our tenants find this as a very good amenity,” said Messing.



SAN FRANCISCO — Graham Street Realty (GSR) has acquired Willows Office Park in Concord, CA from seller and occupant Contra Costa County Employees’ Retirement Association (CCCERA) for $8.55 million. David Dokko of HFF represented the seller in the transaction.

Located near two freeways and abundant retail, Willows is a two-story, 84,715-square-foot, multi-tenant office building on a 4.9-acre parcel located at 1355 Willow Way. Built in 1979, the building has a diversified tenant mix, including companies in the financial services, government, insurance, and legal industries. The property was 93% leased to 14 tenants at the time of sale.

“Willows is a great asset which basically comprises its own asset class in Concord due to its attractive campus setting and location,” said David Messing, principal of Graham Street Realty. “We are excited to acquire this well-located property with strong tenants at a fraction of replacement cost. Between the existing Willows Shopping Center across the street and the CenterCal development that will be soon underway, we will have the best-amenitized office property in Concord.”