February 8, 2023
You are here:  Home  >  Columns  >  Current Article

Santa Barbara office building for lease until $2M renovation starts


Radius Commercial Real Estate Group recently listed two industrial/office buildings totaling 27,200 square feet at 749 and 759 Ward Drive in Santa Barbara.

One 17,200-square-foot building is available for a 58 cent-per-square-foot lease until October 2016 when the owner will begin a $2 million-plus renovation. Both buildings will be ready in early 2017, according to Radius agent Brad Frohling.

“Everything outside of the concrete slab and roof will be renovated,” he told me. “It could be best suited for a tech firm that needs R&D space or it could be built out for mostly office. It has a lot of parking, which is rare.”

The property will be modeled after 111 Castilian Drive, Frohling said. It has been vacant for about a year and previously housed Goleta-based medical device manufacturer Livantec and Applied Magnetics, a data and signal processing company that started in Goleta and is now Innovative Micro Technology.

Property records show that Jim Messina, who performed with Buffalo Springfield and Kenny Loggins and lives in Santa Ynez, purchased the property in June for $3.85 million.

Industrial vacancy in Santa Barbara dipped below 0.1 percent in the second quarter, with only one 2,900-square-foot space available at 120 Santa Barbara St., according to Radius’ second quarter report.

Vacancy in Santa Barbara’s office sector ticked down to 3.3 percent from 3.5 percent as average gross asking rates increased slightly from $2.94 to $3 per square foot. The largest second-quarter lease in Santa Barbara was 11,200 square feet of retail/office space at 1113 State St. by incubator and co-working space Impact Hub.

Apartment complex sold

Los Olivos-based Battaglia Commercial Real Estate Brokers sold a 13-unit apartment complex at 4320 Modoc Road. The property was listed at just less than $5.5 million.

Steve Battaglia of BCRE represented the seller and Donna De Libro of Century 21 Butler Realty represented the buyer, an out-of-town investor with ties to the area.

“The apartment market in Santa Barbara County remains hot with lots of buyers looking for properties. We haven’t seen this many exchange buyers in nearly a decade,” Battaglia said.

The complex includes 13 two-story townhouses, 13 garages, a laundry room and excess land for development.

Santa Barbara has a sub-1 percent apartment vacancy.

Land for hotel listed

Radius Commercial Real Estate Group recently listed a 4.53 acre lot at 101 Garden St. that’s designated for a hotel development not to exceed 250 rooms.

The space could be used for a combination of a hotel, apartments and supporting commercial retailers. Austin Herlihy of Radius Commercial Real Estate Group said he is already getting a lot of calls from sophisticated hotel developers throughout the country. He is working with co-workers Chris Parker, Bob Tuler and Gene Deering on the project.

“The area is certainly vibrant and all of that is building the demand for this particular property,” Herlihy told me, referencing the La Entrada project and the new Sonos building, among other developments. “I don’t know that Santa Barbara has ever seen this much going on in one area.”

The long-term ground lease will go out to bid on Oct. 20.

The space, along with several other parcels along Garden and Yanonali streets, is owned by Santa Barbara real estate investors Jenny and Bill Wright.

The Wrights are also offering a 3-acre lot at 301 E. Yanonali St., where StoneYard Building Materials currently operates. The proposed project would feature a two-story, 38,189-square-foot market, 7,500 square feet of retail and 150 parking spaces.

Santa Barbara Forge and Iron moving

Metalworking company Santa Barbara Forge and Iron is moving from its warehouse and office at 527 Fig Ave. to 626 E. Gutierrez St.

The privately owned company designs, creates and repairs light fixtures, doors, tables, railings and other projects for residential and commercial properties.

SB Forge and Iron purchased the 4,792-square-foot lot on Gutierrez, which includes a 4,500-square-foot building, for $837,500 from the Santa Barbara-based real estate investment company

REH Property in August, according to property records. It last changed hands for $425,000 in 2010.

The building currently houses A Automotive, Timberline Surfboards and Der Volks Werks.

SB Forge and Iron plans to starting renovating the building in October and expects to move in by December, founder and CEO Dan Patterson said.

• Contact Alex Kacik at akacik@pacbiztimes.com.