Demand, OREO Sales Power Commercial Market Gains in Rogers

by George Waldon  on Monday, Oct. 7, 2013 12:00 am  

Resurging demand coupled with the paring of an Illinois lender’s OREO portfolio are helping push commercial activity in the heart of Benton County’s fabled Billion-Dollar Mile.

The near completion of the 60,000-SF Pinnacle Heights I office building developed by Hunt Ventures is an obvious sign of better days in the Rogers market.

Johnelle Hunt’s group also has a nine-story, 211,000-SF office tower on the drawing board. Construction of the grand project could start as early as June 2014 if tenant interest builds as anticipated.

Starting with “30 to 50 percent [preleased] would be right in our wheelhouse,” said John George, executive vice president of Hunt Ventures LLC. “We’re kind of working with that right now.

“When you get a building that tall in an area that doesn’t have that many tall buildings, you want to do something special.”

Construction of the two-story Pinnacle Heights I project at 5708 Northgate Road weighs in at $5.6 million.

It’s considered to be the largest market-rent office project to come on line since the northwest Arkansas real estate bubble burst in 2008.

“It’s user-driven,” said Ramsay Ball, commercial real estate broker with the Bentonville office of Colliers International. “The market is much more rational. A lot of space has been absorbed, and there’s some big tenants out there looking for some substantial space.”

Pinnacle Heights I is 85 percent leased with a mix of tenants needing more space and new names coming to the market, according to George.

He declines to identify who’s on the rent roll. But it’s no secret that Kimberly-Clark Corp. is leasing the entire first floor, a deal that allowed construction to start last year with 50 percent of the space preleased.

“Right now, we’re experiencing some folks looking for larger footprints, and with 750,000 SF to offer in Pinnacle Hills, we’re close to 91 percent leased,” George said.

Though less visible than the Pinnacle Heights project, the nearby sale of “other real estate owned” by PrivateBank Trust of Chicago is also putting dormant property in play along the Interstate 540 corridor.



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