Pittsburgh's US Steel Tower Might Be Sold For $250 Million To New York Investors
Pittsburgh's tallest building may be changing hands soon.
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reported that "A group of New York investors has reached a tentative agreement to buy the 64-story U.S. Steel Tower for roughly $250 million, the Wall Street Journal reported Wednesday.
The deal comes less than two months after reports indicated that a secondary lender, Five Mile Capital, had moved to foreclose on the iconic property after its owners, AREA Property Partners and Winthrop Realty Partners, failed to refinance maturing debt.
According to the Journal, the new ownership group will be led by Mark Karasick, a New York landlord. He could not be reached for comment Wednesday.
AREA Property Partners released a statement, saying, "We are in discussions with our lenders for an extension, and we have received unsolicited offers from buyers at prices well in excess of the debt."
A spokeswoman for Winthrop Realty Trust, an affiliate of Winthrop Realty Partners, said the firm had no ownership interest in the property and declined further comment.
The city's largest skyscraper, completed in 1970, serves as the headquarters for U.S. Steel and health care giant UPMC, which has its name at the top of the building. It is also home to other businesses as well as to U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Western District.
It currently boasts as occupancy rate of about 94 percent. According to the Allegheny County real estate website, it is valued at $175 million for assessment purposes.
Despite the high occupancy rate, the building has run into some problems. Real Estate Alert, an online trade publication, reported that Five Mile Capital forced a foreclosure in December in order to collect a $25 million loan. The move came after the current owners, which reportedly had more than $225 million in outstanding debt on the property, were unable to refinance.
According to the Journal, the deal to buy the property is contingent on the ability of the New York investment group to secure financing for the transaction."