Rubenstein Partners Buys CT Office Tower for $163M

The half-million-square-foot building in Stamford’s central business district was originally built to house the headquarters of the seller, the Royal Bank of Scotland.
600 Washington Blvd. Image courtesy of Rubenstein Partners

Rubenstein Partners LP has acquired the 12-story office tower at 600 Washington Blvd. in Stamford, Conn., in a transaction valued at $163 million. The real estate investment adviser purchased the approximately 540,000-square-foot property from the Royal Bank of Scotland.

A trophy office destination sited in Stamford’s central business district, 600 Washington garnered a notable amount of attention from the investment community, according to JLL, which marketed the property on behalf of the seller. “The appeal of Stamford for investors is the proximity to Manhattan, positive rent growth over the last 20 or so years and continued increases in downtown living where multifamily developments are concerned,” Gil Ohls, managing director with JLL, told Commercial Property Executive. “As it slowly shifts to a more active downtown, there lies greater opportunity to create a first-choice destination outside of NYC which offers an educated workforce.”

Located just one block from a train station, 600 Washington made its debut in 2009, having been built to house the Royal Bank of Scotland’s U.S. headquarters. NatWest Markets, known as RBS’ Corporate & Institutional Banking until last year, will continue to occupy its space in the building under a new 12-year lease agreement with Rubenstein. UBS, Citizens Bank and Bank of America, which inked a lease for approximately 115,000 square feet in 2017, are also tenants at the 85 percent leased property.

Stamford on the upswing

Stamford’s office market is looking up, led by the CBD/Railroad submarket, which recorded roughly 650,000 square feet of positive net absorption in the first quarter of 2019, the highest in Fairfield County, according to a report by JLL.  

“The Stamford market is the brightest light in Connecticut, where commercial real estate is concerned. It is alive and well, as proven by Charter Communications choice to locate their headquarters in Stamford, as well as the continued growth by firms such as Indeed, WWE, Diageo and others in our marketplace,” Ohls said. Glenn Tolchin, Anthony Ledesma and Ed Tonnessen, managing directors with JLL, joined Ohls on the team spearheading the sale of 600 Washington, as did Matt Felice, a senior vice president with the firm.