Company looks to ‘flip’ Fairfield Twp. center
Bridgewater Falls shopping complex in Fairfield Township is located just outside Liberty Township. Photo provided.
Cindi Andrews reports:
Farifield Township’s upscale shopping center, Bridgewater Falls, is for sale. And this time it’s for a positive reason.
Blue Ash-based Phillips Edison bought Bridgewater Falls out of foreclosure in 2010. It boosted occupancy to 97 percent and is now testing the possibility of cashing in on its investment.
It’s a textbook case of how to “flip” a distressed commercial property, and it may be the first of many such properties to come on the market in the next couple of years, those in the commercial real estate business say.
Bridgewater Falls, a lifestyle shopping center, was built in 2005 by Indianapolis-based Premier Properties USA for $80 million. The developer got in trouble as the economy crashed, however, and the property went back to the bank.
Phillips Edison, an owner and operator of shopping centers nationwide, paid $43.3 million for it.
“We knew it was a great property – it had strong fundamentals, was in a good part of town,” said David Birdsall, executive vice president of Phillips Edison. “It was a victim of the times.”
The company put a full-time operations team on-site “to make sure it was providing a good shopping experience,” he said.
Vacant storefronts at Bridgewater Falls were also filled, mostly with chains such as Staples, Chick Fil-A and Buffalo Wild Wings. WG Kitchen and Bar was another key addition, Birdsall said.
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