Terra Secures Retail Loan Amid Economic Uncertainty

March 23, 2020   |   GlobeSt

By John McCurry

“Real estate companies whose assets have appreciated in value now have an opportunity to refinance loans, and that lending activity will help fuel the capital markets for the time being.”

PEMBROKE PINES, FL—Terra City Center Investments II, LLC – an entity of South Florida-based real estate development firm Terra – has closed on $45 million in financing from First Bank of Florida for the second phase of retail space within its Pines City Center development here. Located at the southwest corner of Pines Boulevard and Palm Avenue, Pines City Center is a 47-acre mixed-use development that includes a total of approximately 300,000 square feet of lifestyle-driven retail, entertainment and restaurant space alongside market-rate residential apartments.

Terra closed on the loan amid widespread economic uncertainty and a retail sector that has all but shut down. 

“Every part of the world is experiencing economic uncertainty right now, so the federal government has taken steps to sustain business activity by reducing interest rates close to all-time low levels,” Terra president David Martin tells GlobeSt.com.

“Real estate companies whose assets have appreciated in value now have an opportunity to refinance loans, and that lending activity will help fuel the capital markets for the time being. While lending criteria has tightened, we’re seeing lenders continue to transact deals that benefit from strong income in place and well-capitalized sponsors, which was the case with the retail component at Pines City Center.”

Pines City Center’s second phase comprises 150,000 square feet of retail anchored by Hobby Lobby and UFC Gym. The center is currently 98% leased to restaurant and retail outlets. Groundbreaking of phase two took place in 2019 and most of the development has already been completed, with the remainder of construction expected to wrap up by year’s end. Pines City Center’s first phase, an adjacent 145,000 square feet of retail anchored by Publix, was sold to TA Realty in December 2018.

The development’s newly completed residential component, the adjoining Pines Garden at City Center complex, comprises 387 luxury garden apartments and townhomes and is now welcoming renters.

“Our ability to close this significant loan reflects the retail demand we’ve experienced at Pines City Center as well as the strong relationship between Terra and First Bank of Florida,” Martin said. “Our team created a master plan comprising lifestyle-centered retail that is serving the everyday needs of surrounding residents.”

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