LOS ANGELES - Avison Young, the world’s fastest-growing commercial real estate services firm,announced today the sale of 956 Seward Street in Hollywood. The property consists of 1.29 acres of land and an historic, two-story, 41,000-square-foot (sf) film vault that will remain in operation.

Avison Young Principal Martin McDermott, based in the company’s West Los Angeles office, represented the buyer, Avon Studio Transportation, which will use the site to enable its vehicles within Hollywood to serve clients more effectively and efficiently. Supporting the entertainment industry for 36 years, Avon Studio Transportation boasts one of the largest independently owned and operated fleet of vehicles in Southern California and has locations in Hollywood, Beverly Hills and Santa Monica.

The property was purchased from Editing Film Center and BENHAR Company, who had owned the property since it was built in 1952. The sellers were represented by Seth Stuart of Zurich Investment Company.

“This transaction closed many years after the search for additional parking space began with my client,” comments McDermott, an expert in owner-user transactions. “The challenge for Avon Studio Transportation’s specific requirement was that developers had pushed prices beyond what would work for owner-users prior to the economic downturn. This property provided the ideal location and was also perfectly timed, as pricing is still favorable and we were able lock in an SBA loan at an interest rate below 4%.”

McDermott adds that Avison Young introduced Avon Studio to its lender on the property, Union Bank. A favorable SBA loan was secured before interest rates began to rise.

“About six years ago after an exhaustive search for a space in Hollywood, Martin identified a small parcel of land that was available. Interest rates were at 6% to 7% at that time and I was considering a very high price-per-square-foot for something less than ideal for my business needs because the market was so tight,” says Nelson Silver, founder/owner of Avon Studio Transportation. “After careful consideration, Martin and I elected to not settle. By waiting, we were ultimately able to achieve a much better deal all around with a considerably lower interest rate and about $100 less per square foot than the previous space. This Seward site is also the size I needed and is in the perfect location.”

Silver added that there is currently some demolition occurring on the site, and plans for occupancy are anticipated for November 2013.

956 Seward Street is near the major cross street of Romaine Street and is situated within the Hollywood Media Business Improvement District and a State Enterprise Zone, making it eligible for Economic Development incentives. The property is adjacent to Hollywood Center Studios and across from Hollywood 959, a 244,000-sf Class A office development by J.H. Snyder Co.

The site was fully entitled for a five-story office development, but will be held for the operational use of the buyer instead.

Avison Young is the world’s fastest-growing commercial real estate services firm. Headquartered in Toronto, Canada, Avison Young is a collaborative, global firm owned and operated by its principals. Founded in 1978, the company comprises 1,300 real estate professionals in 52 offices, providing value-added, client-centric investment sales, leasing, advisory, management, financing and mortgage placement services to owners and occupiers of office, retail, industrial and multi-family properties.