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Overseas Investors Buy L.A.'s Figueroa Plaza

October 08, 2002|ROGER VINCENT | TIMES STAFF WRITER

A pair of office buildings in downtown Los Angeles has been sold to overseas investors for $91.5 million.

Figueroa Plaza--twin 16-story towers at 201 and 221 N. Figueroa St.--was bought by Northridge Capital, a Washington-based firm that makes investments for wealthy individuals.

Most of the investors are from Europe, said real estate broker David Doupe of Insignia/ESG, whose firm represented both parties in the sale. This is Northridge Capital's first investment in the West and represents growing buyer interest in downtown Los Angeles, he said.

"The attitude among investors has changed substantially," said Doupe, who credited the growing base of housing downtown as the key factor attracting buyers. The amount of available office space rose for the last two quarters and stands at 21.4% of the market, Insignia said.

Figueroa Plaza's towers were completed in 1986 and 1991 and house 615,112 square feet. They are almost completely leased to such tenants as law firm Lewis, Brisbois, Bisgaard and Smith, Los Angeles County and the city of Los Angeles.

The seller was a venture of Goldman Sachs and Insignia Financial Services Co.-Investment Group, which bid $77 million for the property in 1998.

Recent downtown office sales include BP Plaza for about $200 per square foot and interest in KPMG Tower for about $220 per square foot. Figueroa Plaza traded for about $148 a foot.

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