Clarion Partners Severs Ties with Boston Office Assets

John Hancock Real Estate bought two interconnected office buildings in Boston's Back Bay for more than $100 million.

By Scott Baltic, Contributing Editor

535-545 Boylston St., Boston

535-545 Boylston St., Boston

Boston—For $100.5 million, John Hancock Real Estate has bought the two interconnected 13-story office buildings at 535-545 Boylston St., in Boston’s Back Bay area, John Hancock announced Tuesday. The buildings total 184,000 square feet and are home to a diversified roster of tenants.

The acquisition, according to John Hancock, builds on its commitment to Boston and the Back Bay, where the company currently owns 197 Clarendon and 200 Berkeley and recently announced a $350 million redevelopment at 380 Stuart St. The latter project will involve the construction of a Class A office tower on the site of a nine-story building.

535-545 Boylston is within walking distance of the MBTA Green Line and easily accessible to I-90 (Massachusetts Turnpike), I-93 and Logan International Airport. The buildings were completed in 1967 and 1972 and were completely renovated in 2014, according to data from Yardi Matrix.

The seller was a separate account supervised by Clarion Partners, which had purchased the property in early 2012. Neither John Hancock nor Clarion Partners would comment further on the transaction.

NGKF marketed the property on behalf of Clarion Partners. NGKF’s Boston Capital Markets team, led by U.S. Head of Capital Markets Robert Griffin, Vice Chairman Edward Maher and Executive Managing Director Matthew Pullen, oversaw the transaction in conjunction with NGKF senior managing directors Jim Brady and Jason Cameron.

“Firmly situated among the Back Bay’s top Class B assets, 535-545 Boylston Street offers ideally sized, flexible floor plates that can accommodate a wide variety of tenant requirements,” Pullen said in a prepared statement. “Consequently, the property is well suited to benefit from the Back Bay’s rising-rent environment and consistently strong demand.”

The property is currently 87 percent leased, according to NGKF. Interestingly, at the time that Clarion Partners acquired the property, a Clarion executive told Commercial Property Executive that it was 92 percent occupied and that he expected that figure to rise to 96 percent within several weeks.

Image courtesy of Yardi Matrix

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