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A Compendium of Property & Capital News
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Jul 1
A Compendium of Property & Capital News

TA Realty With Massive $390M 9-Building Shopping Center Purchase from Gravestar

May 18, 2022
Porter Square Shopping Center, Cambridge MA

BOSTON — In a massive 9-building shopping center exchange brokered by Newmark, two homegrown Greater Boston Investment firms completed the $390 million trade of grocery-anchored retail centers across Greater Boston, Massachusetts and Providence, Rhode Island.

Newmark Co-Head of U.S. Capital Markets Robert Griffin, Vice Chairman Geoffrey Millerd, and Managing Directors Jonathan Martin and Paul Penman, all of the firm’s Boston Capital Markets Group, represented the seller and procured the buyer, Boston-based TA Realty. Newmark Managing Director Mathew Adler provided additional support; Executive Managing Director Richard Ruggiero acted as the local broker for the Rhode Island transaction.

“This portfolio represented a generational opportunity—the first-time offering of the highest-quality, privately-owned collection of shopping centers in New England,” said Millerd, in a release. “Phenomenal investor demand for this portfolio underscores the strength of the market for premier supermarket-anchored retail assets in New England.”

Presently 95% leased the portfolio benefits from strong grocery-anchor tenancy via Whole Foods Market, Shaw’s, Star Market, and Dave’s Fresh Marketplace, all of which feature successful long-term operating histories within their respective locations.

“We are extremely pleased with the portfolio sale to TA Realty, a respected Boston-based institutional investor that is working with Wilder, a creative, experienced and community-oriented retail operator,” continued Millerd. As an operator, one of Wilder’s most notable local projects is Arsenal Yards in Watertown, Massachusetts. Totaling more than one million square feet, the vibrant mixed-use Arsenal Yards development combines destination retail, urban living, entertainment and dining with life science and laboratory workplaces. Gravestar, the seller, is a privately held company managing commercial real estate for multiple owners.

“The supermarket anchors are complemented by a mix of high-quality junior anchor tenants, convenience retailers and prized local tenants,” said Penman. “This tenant mix, and in particular the longstanding local operators at each center, has established the properties as highly-popular retail destinations.”

The portfolio includes eight assets in Massachusetts: Auburndale Plaza (Newton), Brookline Plaza (Brookline), Horn Pond Plaza (Woburn), Norwood Plaza (Norwood), Porter Square Shopping Center (Cambridge), Sudbury Plaza (Sudbury), Waltham Plaza (Waltham) and Wellesley Plaza (Wellesley). Additionally, it includes one asset in Rhode Island: Pontiac Avenue Plaza (Cranston).

“These assets serve as focal points within their respective communities,” added Martin. “The seller has been meticulous in its maintenance of the assets and has consistently invested in the centers, enabling them to accommodate evolving shopper demands and community needs. The seller was very focused on finding a successor ownership team that would be committed to the stewardship of the centers and would make a positive contribution to the surrounding communities.”

Newmark Senior Financial Analyst Casey O’Brien and Financial Analyst Coley Cannon provided financial analysis support for the transaction.