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Whitestone REIT Pays $40.7 Million for Sugar Land Retail Centers

Whitestone REIT buys retail center in Sugar Land, near Houston.

Whitestone REIT buys retail center in Sugar Land, near Houston.

HOUSTON – Houston-based Whitestone REIT has acquired two shopping centers, Williams Trace Plaza and Shops at Williams Trace in the Houston suburb of Sugar Land for $40.7 million.

Williams Trace Plaza, purchased for $20.1 million, is 129,222 square foot center on 15 acres. Occupancy of the center is currently 95 percent.

The Shops at Williams Trace, with a price of $20.6 million, totals 132,991 square feet of space on a 12-acre site. Occupancy of the center is currently 87 percent.

The centers are located near Highway 6 and Williams Trace Boulevard.

James C. Mastandrea, Whitestone’s Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, said, “The two properties are our first major acquisitions in the Houston market and bring Whitestone’s Houston footprint to over 2.6 million square feet of leasable space in 33 Community Centered Properties. What attracted us to Williams Trace Plaza and the Shops at Williams Trace is the highly complementary tenant mix and low historical tenant turnover, as well as the highly visible, prime location in Sugar Land, Texas. The community topped Money Magazine’s selection of ‘15 small cities that offer great opportunity’, with lower-than-average unemployment, positive historical job and population growth and strong projected future growth.”

The HFF investment sales team arranging the sale was led by senior managing director Rusty Tamlyn, managing director Ryan West, associate director Matt Berry and real estate analyst Robbie Kilcrease.

The acquisitions are Whitestone’s first in the Houston market since the Houston-based company became publicly traded in 2010 and highlight Whitestone’s transition from its diversified legacy properties in Houston to a retail concentrated portfolio.

The Williams Trace Shopping Centers, located along Texas State Highway 6 with a daily traffic count of over 50,000 cars, meet the needs of the growing Asian and young family population, whose household incomes average $115,000 per year in the surrounding 72,000 homes. The strong existing tenant mix reflects Whitestone’s business model and include national as well as regional and local tenants. The centers, anchored by Randall’s and 99 Ranch Market, include additional tenants such as Walgreens, Luby’s Cafeteria, Los Tios Restaurant and Kumon Math and Reading who have contributed to the centers’ consistently above 90 percent average historical occupancy.

Williams Trace Shopping Center is situated on 26.479 acres at 2200-2400 State Highway 6 at the southeast corner of Williams Trace Boulevard and Highway 6 in Sugar Land. The property’s location offers easy access from Highway 59 and is near to the 800,000-square-foot mixed-use Sugar Land Town Square development. Williams Trace Shopping Center is 90.2 percent leased to Randalls, 99 Ranch Market, Petco, Dollar Tree, Luby’s, Walgreens, GNC, Los Tios Mexican, Design Source, China King and State Farm.

The seller was a partnership formed by Henry S. Miller Companies and Dome Equities, LLC.

Said Greg Miller, CEO/President of Henry S. Miller Companies, “The shopping center is divided into two distinct phases, separated by another property. Phase 1 is anchored by Randalls and, at the time we purchased the center in 2005, Phase 2 was anchored by Palais Royal. However, Palais Royal subsequently vacated. Shawn Ackerman, who runs our Houston office, quickly leased the 30,000 square foot space to 99 Ranch Market, an Asian grocery store. This lease was critical to the success of our investment in the property.”

Dallas-based Henry S. Miller, a full service commercial real estate firm, was established in 1914.


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