100 Southgate Parkway in Morris Township — Courtesy: The Birch Group
By Joshua Burd
An investment firm has made another high-profile addition to its Morris County portfolio, acquiring three office buildings near downtown Morristown for $77 million.
The buyer, The Birch Group, has added 411,737 square feet with its purchase of 60 Columbia Drive, 100 Southgate Parkway and 1200 Mount Kemble Ave. It’s now planning a series of upgrades at each property, seeking to complement the recent $6.7 million in renovations completed by the seller, Lincoln Equities Group, to help drive leasing at the buildings.
The portfolio is home to tenants such as Morgan Stanley, Verizon and LG Electronics.
“We strongly believe in the vitality and viability of the suburban New Jersey office market, which has been hampered by the pandemic but is positioned for a strong rebound,” said Mark Meisner, founder and president of The Birch Group. “Morristown offers a thriving downtown with access to various restaurants, local retail and an abundance of newly constructed residential apartments. The region has historically attracted corporate interest from prominent organizations hoping to tap into the highly educated, top-tier workforce, and we’re confident we’ll continue to build on our track record of success.”
Cushman & Wakefield’s New Jersey capital markets team represented LEG in the sale, which marks The Birch Group’s latest investment in Morris County. The firm also owns 350 and 360 Mount Kemble Ave., a nearby 230,000-square-foot office campus, which it acquired in 2018 and has brought to 98 percent occupancy.
The landlord will look to attract tenants that are seeking to locate or expand in Morristown, but have been unable to find space in the ever-tightening submarket, according to a news release. It touted the properties’ location near affluent communities, highway and mass transit access and the offerings of downtown Morristown, along with on-site amenities such as food service and fitness centers.
“Morris County is known for its major corporate presence and for having the state’s highest concentration of Fortune 500 firms,” said David W. Bernhaut, an executive vice chairman with Cushman & Wakefield. “There has been increased interest and leasing velocity in the region recently, and we’re confident The Birch Group will build upon this momentum and the firm’s recent leasing success at 350-360 Mount Kemble.”