Owners of Austin Office Net $44M Refi

The joint venture owners of Downtown Austin’s Bank of America Building have successfully lined up a $44 million refinancing for the property. Owners Walton Street Capital and T. Stacey Associates went though the Dallas office of Holliday Fenoglio Fowler L.P. to arrange the financing, which was provided by CapitalSource Finance L.L.C. Proceeds from the refinancing will be used for capital improvements and additional lease-up for the property, which is currently 90 percent occupied to a tenant roll including Bank of America, BDO Siedman L.L.P. and Manpower. The owners acquired the property in 2004. In addition to the 26-story Bank of America building, the site also includes a 90,000-square-foot currently vacant commercial building, as well as a parking garage and another planned parking facility with 1,150 spaces. T. Stacey and Walton Street might find some trouble leasing up the remaining space in the property, as the Austin office market had some 2 million square feet of speculative space under construction as of the beginning of 4Q08, according to a report by Grubb & Ellis Co. Due to the amount of new space due to come online, vacancy rates are expected to rise over the next couple of years. However, the credit crunch may prove a blessing to current owners in the market, as it remains to be seen how much of the planned space will actually make it to the market and how much will be hung up with financing difficulties. Austin-based T. Stacey & Associates has acquired and managed more than 4.5 million square feet of office, hotel and mixed-use space since the firm’s inception in 1994. Walton Street Capital, which is headquartered in Chicago, sponsors a series of private equity real estate investment funds.