PUBLISHED: 4:00 PM on Wednesday, January 16, 2008
California firm buys Willoughby properties
It may be the largest single sale of commercial office space in Juneau's history. Three Willoughby Avenue properties, representing almost 100,000 square feet of office space, were sold recently to a private California investment group.

Those close to the transaction cannot reveal the purchase price, but the properties were listed in October for $13.1 million.

The Carlton Smith Co. of Juneau co-brokered the transaction with Jones Lang LaSalle, the global real estate services and money management firm. The property portfolio was owned by the City of Kasaan, a village on Prince of Wales Island 30 miles west of Ketchikan.

All three of the properties are under long-term leases by the State of Alaska.

"This sale speaks to the stability of State of Alaska leases in Juneau," said Carlton Smith, owner of the Juneau-based commercial real estate firm.

"The Willoughby portfolio is one of the very few investment grade quality properties in Alaska that has attracted Lower 48 investors," Smith said. "The portfolio yield exceeded 10 percent."

Courtesty Photo
  Carlton Smith, Juneau commercial realtor, with the Willoughby Ave. properties to either side of him. The properties amount to nearly 100,000 square feet of office space.
Craig Meyer of Jones Lang LaSalle added, "We engaged in a nation-wide marketing campaign directed towards institutional buyers, especially those who owned government occupied assets."

The buyer of the Juneau properties, The STG Group of Santa Rosa, California, owns several million square feet of commercial properties throughout the Western U.S. including nearly a half million square feet of commercial and industrial property in Anchorage.

"The fact that State of Alaska is one of STG's tenants in the Anchorage properties was a factor in the selection process," Meyer said.

State of Alaska departments of Administration, Natural Resources, and Environmental Conservation hold long-term leases to the office space.