Campanelli/TriGate Overhauling Former Reebok HQ; Newmark Tabbed for Exclusive

*Originally published by Joe Clements, The Real Reporter

STOUGHTON—Cast in executive-level mettle when designed for Reebok Corp., 100 Technology Center Dr. was always a step ahead of its competition as a premier office building south of Boston, and new owners Campanelli and TriGate Capital have cobbled together a fast-track plan to ensure the shoemaker’s former home retains its stature as a suburban jewel. Following their $9.0 million bargain-basement purchase in the waning moments of 2016, the value-add tandem aims to use a low basis going in, their proven redevelopment formula and multi-pronged marketing effort to bring tenants over the transom, with Campanelli principal Stephen Murphy announcing to Real Reporter this past week that Newmark has been named exclusive leasing agent for the property, an assignment on which Michael Frisoli and Tyler McGrail will work closely with Campanelli’s Director of Leasing Peter Brown. NAI/Hunneman principal David Ross negotiated the sale between CWCapital and the buyers, Campanelli-Trigate 100 TCD Stoughton LLC, with the deal done on an all-cash basis.

“Our goal is to create a best-in-class space, offering businesses a complex of exceptional amenities that can’t be found elsewhere in this market,” says acquisitions chief Murphy, pointing to 100 Technology Dr. as an enabler in that endeavor. “The property is unique in that it offers an opportunity to lease upwards of 186,000 contiguous square feet in a corporate headquarters setting in the Route 128 South market,” Murphy observes, describing the sort of building one might find in Waltham or Wellesley. An extensive window line, high-grade materials and efficient floor plates between 32,000- and 36,000 sf are among the strong suits cited for embracing the opportunity coming as the submarket enjoys a mid-decade rebound after starting the 2010s reeling from the 2008 recession.

The strategy, explains Murphy, is to pitch the building that turns 30 next year as an alternative to rising rents elsewhere and still allow firms to be within 17 miles of downtown Boston—that the definition of “elsewhere” along with other hotspots in the Hub, Cambridge and Waltham. According to Newmark research, Route 128 South first class space was averaging $23.89 per sf at year-end 2016 versus $57.93 in Boston’s Financial District, $70.50 per sf in the Back Bay and an astounding $72.63 per sf in Kendall Square. The average is $37.93 per sf in the Route 128 Central submarket where a stream of requirements have been expanding space searches due to escalating rents, one factor seen in the southern tier posting over 211,000 sf of positive net absorption during 2016 to push the vacancy rate down to 12.6 percent, according to data from Newmark Research Manager Jonathan Sullivan and analyst Dan Carucci.

Campanelli/TriGate’s Stoughton team is in many facets the same contingent coming off a wildly successful repositioning of Heritage Landing in North Quincy where a pair of vacant office buildings were purchased in summer 2014 for a mere $16.3 million and repositioned using the formula now planned a dozen miles south. The campus later grew to three buildings and was quickly embraced by a bevy of companies responding to modernized facilities and sharply discounted rates to downtown, the Seaport and Cambridge despite being just a 15 minute subway south of the urban core.

At 100 Technology Center Dr., the partnership will infuse several million dollars to upgrade common areas and infrastructure, reconfigure the main entrance and incorporate fresh lobby finishes and a novel cafe concept. “We are thrilled to have purchased a property that fits perfectly into the company’s portfolio,” says Brown, who oversaw the leasing program at Heritage Landing along with Frisoli and McGrail and predicts that “tenants will love the amenity rich working environment and benefit greatly from Campanelli’s hands-on approach and our cutting-edge renovation plans.”

Having its own construction crew and the price-per-pound of just $48 per sf to buy 100 Technology Center Dr. creates “the ultimate combination” of delivering Tier One amenities at reduced rents, relays Murphy. Ten years ago this coming September, 100 Technology Center Dr. fetched $45.5 million, that equating to $244 per sf.

Besides a state-of-the-art physical plant plus improvements to landscaping and signage, the rebranded Stoughton asset will feature a fully renovated fitness center including a spin studio with virtual ride instruction, plus locker rooms and showers. Conference/meeting space is being created next to the cafe so larger group sessions can be scheduled, and there are interior gaming areas for foosball and ping pong. Patio seating equipped with free Wi-Fi, a grilling station and multi-sport court will enhance the 10-acre campus.