Philadelphia-NGKF Capital Markets has been named the exclusive listing agent to sell One Franklin Plaza, a 607,471-square-foot trophy office tower at 200 N. 16th St. in Center City Philadelphia. The 24-story asset offers a unique redevelopment opportunity to bring hotel, multifamily or other uses to a highly accessible central business district (CBD) location.

 

“This is a unique opportunity to introduce mixed use on a very large scale, essentially creating a destination development at the gateway to Center City Philadelphia,” said Michael Margolis, NGKF senior managing director. Mr. Margolis, David Dolan and Brett Segal with Newmark Grubb Knight Frank's Capital Markets Group, are marketing the property with local experts Wayne Fisher and Craig Scheuerle.

The building and an adjoining property served as GlaxoSmithKline’s headquarters from the time of its construction in 1980 until the company’s recent consolidation to a smaller space outside the CBD. The move rendered the asset vacant, creating an opportunity to bring in a new office user or take the property in a different direction. The site is designated CMX-5, the city’s most flexible and dense zoning, which allows uses at the site in addition to office, mixed use, apartments, hotel, health care and education uses.

“One Franklin will easily support a mixed multiple use redevelopment with its three elevator banks, two lobbies and the ability to create a third lobby,” Mr. Dolan said. “For example, a university could build out student housing around one elevator bank and dedicate the other two elevator banks to classrooms and administrative offices.”

The site is located at the intersection of 16th and Race streets and provides immediate access to Interstate 676 and excellent accessibility to major public transportation links including regional rail, subways, buses, Amtrak and the Airport Highspeed Line. In addition, One Franklin Plaza is allocated 150 parking spaces in a 450-space underground garage.

The tower’s unobstructed views and the quality and quantity of transportation options serving the building also make One Franklin Plaza an excellent multifamily conversion, Mr. Margolis observed.

“Young professionals have embraced urban living to such an extent that more than a third of Philadelphia’s Center City residents ages 25-34 actually commute to work in the suburbs,” Mr. Margolis explained. “An apartment at One Franklin Plaza would put residents steps away from transportation options, either to commute to the suburbs or to reach employers in the heart of the city.”

 

Developers have converted over eight million square feet of Philadelphia’s existing CBD space to apartment and hotel uses since 1990, and both healthcare and educational institutions have been expanding there as well.

 

The property may also attract interest from office investors. With very few large blocks of office space available in the market and high new construction costs creating barriers to entry, the building would compete for the majority of the large tenants with lease expirations coming up over the next few years. The 26,000-square-foot floor plates can easily support multi-tenant floors as well as large single users.

About Newmark Grubb Knight Frank

Newmark Grubb Knight Frank (NGKF) is one of the world's leading commercial real estate advisory firms. Together with its affiliates and London-based partner Knight Frank, NGKF employs more than 12,000 professionals, operating from more than 320 offices in established and emerging property markets on five continents.

 

With roots dating back to 1929, NGKF's strong foundation makes it one of the most trusted names in commercial real estate. Its integrated services platform includes leasing advisory, global corporate services, investment sales and capital markets, consulting, program and project management, property and facilities management, and valuation services. A major force in the real estate marketplace, NGKF serves the local and global property requirements of tenants, landlords, investors and developers worldwide. For further information, visit www.ngkf.com.

NGKF is a part of BGC Partners, Inc. (NASDAQ: BGCP), a leading global brokerage company primarily servicing the wholesale financial and real estate markets. For further information, visit www.bgcpartners.com.