Brookfield Buys Balance of Boston Buildings for $477M

Brookfield Asset Management has closed a deal to buy the balance of a property it previously co-owned with an affiliate of RREEF Alternative Investments, a member of Deutsche Bank Group. According to a report in the Boston Globe this morning, Brookfield paid about $477 million for 49 percent of the officer towers at 53 and 75 State St. in Boston, finalizing the transaction as 2007 drew to a close. All together the properties total about 1.87 million square feet, along with parking space. The transaction came in spite of recent sluggishness in the Boston-area real estate investment market. The third quarter of 2007 saw only a handful of properties trade hands in the market, including the 270,000-square-foot Two Oliver St. for $61.5 million and the 110,000-square foot 30 Winter St. for about $30 million, both near the properties that Brookfield bought. The 53 and 75 State St. buildings are in Boston’s Financial District, which has seen relative strength recently. According to Cushman & Wakefield, class A vacancy in the submarket stood at 7.2 percent in the third quarter of 2007, a full percentage point drop from the second quarter. Although Financial District class A vacancy is still above the historic low of 1.7 percent–which occurred in 2000, during the height of the tech boom–vacancies in the submarket have come down 5.3 percentage points in the last two years. Toronto-based Brookfield, which also invests in power and infrastructure assets, currently has approximately $90 billion of assets under management. The company recently spun off its timber and power assets into a Bermuda-based partnership, creating an offshore investment vehicle.