Palo Alto is by most measures one of the tightest submarkets of the Bay Area, so when an opportunity to own a building in the city’s downtown area opens up, it can be a quick transaction.
According to public records, one such transaction just occurred, where the San Francisco-based Blox Ventures and Sausalito-based Land Veritas purchased a 1975 building at 530 Lytton Avenue in Palo Alto for $52.9 million, or $1,074 per square foot. The public records list the three-story building at 49,264 square feet.
Several deed transactions have been recorded since the nineties, most of them in association with trusts of the Arrillaga, Closs, Hatfield, Hovis and Johnson families. One interesting detail, however is that in the 2014-2015 tax year the total value of the land and the building was assessed at $5,011,691.
Blox is new entity, formed in August of this year according to California Secretary Of State Business Registration, and its principal is Jason Oberman, formerly of Rockwood Capital. On its Web site, Blox lists another investment as part of its portfolio, the 21,000 square foot 70 N. Second Street in San Jose for which the firm paid $3.25 million in May of this year.
Land Veritas was co-founded by Linda Law and Tracey Brownfield, two industry veterans who have been active in the Bay Area commercial real estate market since the early ’90s.
The downtown Palo Alto market is boasting a vacancy rate of 0.86 percent in September, down from 1.1 percent in August, according to a recent market report from the Redwood City office of Colliers International. This is the lowest vacancy in the Peninsula market, where average vacancy hovers just under 8 percent. The asking rents in Palo Alto’s downtown core have risen to $8.83 in September from August’s $7.71. The average is at $4.33, and the only higher asking rent is on Sand Hill Road, where the September rent has hit $11.51, according to the same report.
Image courtesy of Blox Ventures