Crocker Partners Completes $5 Million Orlando Office Park Makeover

Crocker Partners has completed a $5 million improvement program at the newly rebranded University Park in east Orlando. The investment in the five-building, 386,000-square-foot office center near the University of Central Florida (UCF) campus comes as the company eyes additional investment in the region. University Park is home to companies including Apple, Regus HQ, Zenith Insurance, Tony Roma’s, HCA , Jackson Therapy Partners, and multiple agencies of the federal government, among others. It is currently 85 percent leased, up from 65 percent since Crocker Partners acquired the property, which was in foreclosure, in 2013.  

“With Orlando’s resurgent market and this property’s clear potential, we made the investment to solidify University Park as east Orlando’s premier office center,” said Josh Edwards, Crocker Partners vice president.

Recognizing that UCF’s proximity and community presence is a key factor in the park’s appeal, Crocker Partners announced a new partnership with the University’s School of Visual Arts and Design. Through the ongoing program, students will showcase their work in each building’s lobby.  

“This collaboration gives talented artists exposure, and adds a new dimension to our workplace experience for tenants and visitors. It recognizes UCF’s lead role in creating partnerships that benefit students, businesses and our communities,” said Edwards.

Centrally located on University Boulevard at Rouse Road, University Park is convenient to Downtown, Orlando’s major thoroughfares and the University of Central Florida and Research Park. Improvements include new entry monument signage and landscaping to rebrand the park, renovation of all building entries, main lobbies and common areas. Building systems were modernized for energy efficiency and improved access control. University Park’s buildings range from 64,000 to 94,000 square feet, with suites available from under 1,000 to 11,267 contiguous square feet. Orlando is the fastest-growing by population of the country’s 30 largest regions, according to the US Census Bureau. That growth is driving job creation and corporate expansion, according to University Park exclusive leasing agent CBRE, which projects the Orlando office market will continue to strengthen in 2016. The company’s first quarter 2016 Market Report showed strong leasing activity in the East Orlando submarket, with 98,004 square feet leased, bringing vacancy down to 10 percent.  

“Crocker Partners recognized an opportunity to acquire a fundamentally sound but underperforming asset in Orlando,” said Micah Strader, CBRE vice president. “Their investment has significantly raised the profile of the buildings and has attracted top flight tenants to University Park.”

University Park’s rebranding is the latest improvement program completed or underway at high profile Crocker Partners-owned properties throughout Florida. Last year, the company invested $8 million in an “extreme makeover” of Jacksonville’s 752,000-square-foot Prominence office park, and completed a $15 million renovation at Miami’s SunTrust Center. Currently, improvements are underway at Miami Center, the state’s second largest Class A office center in Downtown Miami, at Boca Raton’s One Town Center and The Plaza office towers, and in the West Palm Beach CBD at Esperanté. The company is preparing to launch a makeover for Boca Center, a 476,000-square-foot office, retail and hotel center, which it originally developed in the mid-1980s. In Central Florida, Crocker Partners also owns the two-building Maitland Lakes, with 174,048 square feet, at the I-4 interchange in Maitland.  According to Edwards, Crocker Partners is actively looking to expand its Central Florida office portfolio. Overall, Crocker Partners’ portfolio, valued at more than $2 billion, encompasses 9 million square feet in Florida and Georgia.


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