Equity One Buys Potrero Center for $111M; Is Multi-Family Next?

By Alex Girda, Associate Editor Adding a premiere Bay Area retail spot to its portfolio, Equity One Inc. recently closed on the acquisition of the Potrero Center in San Francisco from the Emerald Fund in a deal estimated at $111 million. The North Miami Beach, Fla.-based retail REIT prevailed in a field of some 30 suitors for [...]

Adding a premiere Bay Area retail spot to its portfolio, Equity One Inc. recently closed on the acquisition of the Potrero Center in San Francisco from the Emerald Fund in a deal estimated at $111 million. The North Miami Beach, Fla.-based retail REIT prevailed in a field of some 30 suitors for the 227,000-square-foot center, the San Francisco Business Times reported. The closing followed a year in which Equity One bought properties valued at $1 billion and disposed of another $700 million worth.  

The main selling point for Potrero may have been the potential to develop up to 1,800 residential units on the hilltop parcel, which straddles the Mission District and Potrero Hill neighborhoods.  Although it is yet unclear whether Equity One plans a residential component, the new owners may find the idea attractive, considering the city’s recent surge in demand for multi-family housing.

At the time of the transaction, the Safeway-anchored center had a solid 98 percent occupancy rate. A potential hurdle to adding a multi-family component is that Safeway has a long-term 60,000-square-foot lease at the center and would have to sign off on any redevelopment program.

Photo courtesy of Crosspoint Realty Services