Ameriquest signs 118,000-SF lease

Ameriquest signs 118,000-SF lease – Ameriquest Mortgage Company

Elaine Misonzhnik

Last week, Cohen Brothers Realty Corporation announced that Ameriquest Mortgage Company has signed a 118,000 SF lease at its. 333 Westchester Ave. building in White Plains, N.Y. The move highlights both the extensive marketing campaign Cohen Brothers has launched to lease the property and the possible role it might play in the Westchester county Central Business District.

Cohen Brothers bought the building several years. ago, as part of a four-building, 600,000 SF White Plains Corporate Campus.

Charles S. Cohen, president of Cohen Brothers, said he dreamed of transforming the property since he was a young boy.

“I used to live in Harrison and when I traveled past it, I always thought it was a spectacular building, with great landscaping,” he said. “So when I heard it was for sale, it sounded like a great opportunity to turn it into a multi-tenant complex.”

According to current leasing agent Stephen 3. Riker, vice chairman of Colliers ABR, the property was “institutional-quality” at the time of the sale, housing single tenant Craft Foods. The developer undertook an extensive renovation project, including zoning changes, new lobbies, a 20,000 SF cafeteria, and state-of-the-art fitness center for the tenants. Cohen also hired Colliers ABR as the exclusive leasing agent, completing enough transactions in the past few months to account for a 50% occupancy at the complex.

Ameriquest, in particular, leased the space for its subsidiary, Argent Mortgage, which will use the building as a loan processing training campus, complete with expansion options of up to 100,000 SF and transportation service provided by the owner to and from the nearby train station.

“The wonderful thing about this property is its flexibility, it can appeal to both a small and a large tenant,” said Riker, who along with Michael Norris, managing director of Colliers ABR, and Michelle DeBerry, associate, represented the landlord in the transaction. “All the buildings have been renovated, we have more than adequate parking, and we are in direct proximity to 1-287 and Westchester Ave. and North St.”

According to Adam J. Bass, senior executive vice president of Argent Mortgage, the company “selected White Plains because of its positive business environment. This new location will provide us with access to the highly educated workforce we need to help us grow.”

Cohen maintains that his firm is currently in negotiations with tenants willing to lease an additional 100,000 SF at the complex. He projects full occupancy for the end of the year.

“We would like to attract the same kind of high quality tenants here as we do in our New York City properties,” he said.

COPYRIGHT 2003 Hagedorn Publication

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