Historic waterfront industrial property in Richmond sells for $104 million

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California Construction News staff writer

Ford Point, a historic 478,761 sq. ft. industrial property on Richmond’s waterfront has been purchased by New York-based Madison Capital, a real estate investment and operating company, and Meadow Partners, a private real estate investment firm for $103.7 million.

Located at 1414 Harbour Way S, the property was 83 per cent leased at sale to corporate tenants including SunPower, Mountain Hardwear and California Closets.

Orton Development purchased the long dormant, 22.9-acre site from the Richmond Redevelopment Agency in 2004 and launched a $40 million renovation of the entire building including new building systems and an extensive seismic upgrade. Since 2008, more than $11 million has been invested in an upgraded roof, electric vehicle charging stations, asphalt repaving, and a one mega-watt rooftop solar system.

“Ford Point is a spectacular asset and model of urban revitalization and is truly a one-of-a-kind San Francisco Bay Area landmark. This important historical Bay Area treasure has been a labor of love for the Orton Development team from the time they purchased it in 2004,” said executive managing director Seth Siegel. “The Orton team has done a fantastic job on the rehabilitation and lease-up of Ford Point.”

The structure’s distinct features include a brick façade, factory-style windows and skylights that allow for day-lit spaces, and a south facing sawtooth roof that houses a one-megawatt solar system. Located adjacent to the building is the recently completed Richmond Ferry terminal. Ford Point also provides views of San Francisco, the Bay Bridge, Oakland, and Berkeley.

“We were drawn to this opportunity by the asset’s prominent waterfront location, robust power supply, high ceiling heights, expansive parking area, and potential to create a dynamic best-in-class R&D facility in one of the East Bay’s fastest growing submarkets,” said Jonathan Nachmani, Madison’s Managing Director and Head of Acquisitions. “Our capital improvement program will respond to the shortage of premium R&D space that is most in demand and will attract many of the Bay Area’s most innovative users.”

Designed in 1930 by renowned architect Albert Kahn, Ford Point was built as the Ford Motor Company Assembly Plant and was the largest assembly plant to be built on the West Coast. Ford Point has been on the National Register of Historical places since 1988, and the site is home to a National Parks Services education center, known as the Rosie the Riveter Visitor Center.

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