Nuveen Boosts Boston Presence

The company has acquired 350 Washington, a Downtown Crossing retail property that has several major anchors including Marshall’s HomeGoods, TJ Maxx and Boston Sports Club.
350 Washington. Image courtesy of Nuveen Real Estate

Nuveen Real Estate, a global real estate investment management firm and one of the largest stakeholders in the Boston area, has acquired 350 Washington, a 147,273-square-foot, Class A flagship retail asset in the Downtown Crossing submarket of Boston. The property is anchored by Marshall’s, HomeGoods, TJ Maxx and Boston Sports Club, which is located on the top floor of the four-story building.

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Nuveen, the investment management arm of TIAA, did not release the name of the seller or the price. However, the asset is listed on the web site of Invesco Real Estate Advisors as a property set for disposition as of September. Invesco acquired 350 Washington in 2011 for $128 million from Real Estate Capital Partners, which made the purchase on behalf of two German funds, according to media reports at the time.

Situated in the heart of Boston’s downtown urban core, the property serves as a gateway to both the Back Bay and city’s Financial District. Thousands of pedestrians walk past the building every day. Manuel Martin, head of US Retail at Nuveen Real Estate, said in a prepared statement the property has a strong tenant credit profile and is in a dominant retail area with exposure to office, residential and tourist traffic. He said 350 Washington provides Nuveen an attractive risk-adjusted return. The site had previously operated as the flagship store in Boston for F.W. Woolworth Co. for decades, before it was redeveloped as a multi-tenant retail asset in 2004.

Large stakeholder

One of the largest stakeholders in the area, Nuveen has $3.2 billion in debt and equity investments under management in Boston. Most of the assets are office and retail properties, including 33 Arch St., a 603,309-square-foot, 33-story Class A office building acquired in 2011 by TIAA-CREF.

The firm owns more than 96 retail assets throughout the U.S. and has about $130 billion in assets under management. Last week, Nuveen made news with the purchase of a 29 million-square-foot portfolio of U.S. industrial properties from Blackstone in a deal valued at $3 billion. The portfolio consists of more than 100 bulk logistics, light industrial and urban infill properties. Nuveen manages about 17.2 billion square feet of logistics assets globally.

Earlier this month, Nuveen sold Township Apartments, a 132-unit upscale community in Redwood City, Calif., to Essex Property Trust for $88.7 million.