Real Estate Moves: 600 Alexander Park

Trinity Alliance

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Published in U.S. 1 Newspaper on February 23, 2000. All rights

reserved.

RCN’s Site Search

RCN Corp., in the midst of a search for a new

headquarters,

has tripled its projection of the space it will need and could be

trying to engage four municipalities in a horse race to see which

can get the approvals to the finish line first. Instead of building

a 500,000 square foot headquarters as announced last fall, it now

hopes to build 1.5 million square feet and break ground in July.

Three different developers are offering sites in three different

Princeton-area

townships: West Windsor, Lawrence, and Ewing, and a site in

Pennsylvania

is supposedly also in contention. But to go forward simultaneously

with three sets of drawings in three townships would be very expensive

either for RCN or for the three developers, so RCN may only be trying

to test the waters on site approval for Lawrence and Ewing. The

approvals

are in place in West Windsor.

Fast-growing RCN is the largest single-source facilities-based

provider

of telephone, Internet and cable television services to dense

residential

markets. It currently has 600 employees in three buildings and 200,000

square feet at the Carnegie Center with a lease on the major building,

105, that extends through September, 2004. It also has a call center

at Lawrence Circle.

Lawrence Township is in RCN’s spotlight because on Tuesday, February

29, Matrix Development Group (based at Exit 8A/Monroe Center at

Forsgate)

is scheduled to present a plan for the former Union Camp site on

Princeton

Pike plus some limited access acreage from the portfolio owned by

DKM. Christopher Tarr of Smith Stratton et al is representing the

applicants. Richard F.X. Johnson, senior vice president, is in charge

of the project for Matrix, which would build the facility and turn

it over to RCN.

Matrix is asking for a total of 1.5 million square feet, including

10 office buildings and nine parking garages, to be built on 134

acres.

The application also calls for an employee training facility with

overnight sleeping capacity to house the "Cable Camp," a

training

center for installation of phone, cable, and high speed Internet

services.

The now vacant Union Camp facility formerly housed 187 scientists

and if it is not incorporated into the plan, it might need to be

demolished,

with all of the complications that might involve. But at the end of

the day RCN would own its own place.

RCN would also own its own headquarters if it built in Ewing on the

110-acre Atchley farm tract, located on the west side of Pennington

Road (Route 31) south of I-95. Here, it is being represented by

Carnegie

Center-based King Interests, which did the initial site search last

fall. No applications have yet been filed for this site but Fred

Walters,

Ewing Township’s business administrator, says that if an application

conforms to township zoning, all approvals could be completed within

a month.

Last year Ewing — responding to protests from residents —

rejected an application for development that would include retail

stores, a hotel, warehouses and offices. "I believe this

development

has received a much more favorable reception," says Walters.

"Ewing’s

procedures are followed through relatively quickly if there are not

any problems." The fact that the tract is currently zoned

residential

does not constitute a problem, he says. Mrs. A.L.P. Atchley’s house

could be considered historic but is not located on the center of the

property. Walters also says that currently Route 31 has only one ramp

to I-95 but another is planned and is supposed to be built soon.

The Carnegie Center’s owners, Boston Properties, could accommodate

RCN’s needs on Route 1 South in West Windsor between Alexander Road

and Carnegie Center Boulevard. Approvals are already in place —

lasting through 2113 — for 1.1 million square feet plus parking

garages, and RCN would not need to build a hotel because the

AmeriSuites

and the Hyatt Regency are so close.

"Everything that is going on in Lawrence, as it relates to Union

Camp, has been in place at the Carnegie Center for years," says

Sam Surtees, West Windsor’s director of community development, who

met with RCN’s attorney last month. "All they need to do is come

in with full scale architectural and engineering drawings and they

will be in front of the planning board and could break ground in

July."

But in West Windsor RCN would be paying rent on a build-to-suit campus

with a long-term lease. "Boston Properties is not in the business

of selling land," says Micky Landis, regional vice president,

noting that this option offers maximum flexibility for growth or exit

strategies and that his project is way ahead of the others in

planning.

"We have DOT access permits and curb cuts in place that could

take them years to get."

Still, Landis thinks that all three townships would expedite this

project. "If you have a million square foot in your township,

developed today, you have raised $3 to $4 million for your township

without spending one penny. I would expect any township to roll over

and give them what they want. West Windsor has a reputation of being

tough, as does every other township in our area, including Lawrence.

But in this particular instance, I think they would all be

extraordinarily

cooperative."

As for the Bucks County site, little information is available about

the potential location or the developer. It could even be a mere ploy,

"stalking horse" to be used in negotiations with New Jersey

state government to bargain for maximum tax benefits.

RCN Corporation (RCNC), 105 Carnegie Center, Suite

300, Princeton 08540. David C. McCourt, chairman and CEO.

609-734-3700;

fax, 609-734-7551. Home page: http://www.rcn.com.

— Barbara Fox

Top Of Page
Real Estate Moves: 600 Alexander Park

TrammellCrow, the property management and consulting

firm, has moved from 993 Lenox Drive to the brand new Hillier-designed

building at 600 Alexander Park. The 140,000 square-foot building is

fully leased and Mathematica is its chief tenant. A new 72,000

square-foot

Class A spec building next to it will be built this year.

Princeton staffers Aubrey Haines and Karen Iman have closed more than

$260 million in transactions in the past six years. As a team they

have sold the 720,000 square foot Lockheed Martin Corp facility and

leased the Berlitz headquarters on Alexander Road and more than

150,000

feet at 500 College Road.

An 11th-generation New Jerseyan, Haines went to Tufts, Class of 1985,

and has studied at the London School of Economics, Wharton School,

Temple, Mercer County Community College, and Rider. He just stepped

down as board chairman of the Princeton Chamber.

Iman ran her own commercial real estate database company before

selling

it to a publisher. She has worked at the Linpro Company and Jackson

Cross and held vice president positions at Rosenfeld Inc. and GMH

Realty. With a New Jersey headquarters in Chatham, Trammel Crow has

more than 3,5000 employees in 200 offices nationwide.

TrammellCrow Company, 600 Alexander Park, Suite

201, Princeton 08540. Aubrey Haines/Karen Iman, vice presidents.

609-951-0200;

fax, 609-951-0180.

Top Of Page
Trinity Alliance

The Garibaldi Group — one of the few privately-owned

real estate firms in New Jersey — has joined with Gale & Wentworth

and a European company, King Sturge, to form the Trinity Alliance,

International Real Estate Advisors, with the intention of providing

a "single cross-Atlantic network of integrated services to U.S.

and foreign corporations." The alliance will offer such services

as tenant representation, facilities and property management, and

acquisition and disposition representation.

Based in Florham Park, Gale & Wentworth has an office in England and

owns or manages a portfolio totaling more than 29 million square feet.

It has made investment partnerships with Morgan Stanley Dean Water,

J.P. Morgan, PaineWebber, and the Praedium Fund.

Based in Chatham, the 81-year-old Garibaldi Group belongs to Corfac

International, which covers 41 markets in the United States and

Canada.

The group’s clients include Bristol-Myers Squibb, Honeywell, Schering

Plough, and Warner Lambert.

King Sturge employs 790 people in the United Kingdom and 310 in

Europe,

plus it also has offices in China and Australia. It also belongs to

Corfac International.

On the alliance board, the Garibaldi Group will be represented by

James J. Garibaldi and Peter D. Blanchard. Gale & Wentworth will be

represented by Donald M. Slaght, Bart Oates, and Carl Seaholm.

The Garibaldi Group, 1 Palmer Square, Suite 435,

Princeton 08542. Robert T. Morford, principal. 609-688-3490; fax,

609-688-3494.

Gale & Wentworth LLC, 4390 Route 1, Princeton

08540.

Doug Lezynski, leasing agent. 609-452-0771; fax, 609-452-2870.

Gale and Wentworth LLC, 2 Village Boulevard,

Princeton

Forrestal Village, Princeton 08540. Marie Cunningham, senior property

manager. 609-799-7400; fax, 609-799-0245. Home page:

http://www.galewent.com.


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