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August 5, 2013 Deal Watch

Blue Back Sq. visionary eyes Farmington mixed-use development

photo | Contributed New Britain's Campus View Apts. has changed hands again.
photo | Contributed Beer will be distributed from this North Haven site.

The visionary developer who transformed a pair of former car dealerships and adjoining West Hartford parcels into Blue Back Square has set his sights on a similar transformation of the former Chuck's Steakhouse site in Farmington's Village section.

Robert Wienner, (rhymes with “winner'') managing principal for JDA Development in West Hartford, says he'd like to turn the former Chuck's location, owned by the adjacent Country Club of Farmington, into a scaled-down version of Blue Back, featuring luxury condos and office-retail space.

Wienner told Deal Watch recently the country club has accepted his unspecified offer for the 1.7-acre site that also houses a two-story office building.

Right now, the transaction is undergoing due diligence, with closing set for later this year. By that timetable, construction wouldn't begin until early 2014, he said.

Wienner proposes to raze both structures, replacing them with an office building about the same size, at 4,000 square feet. Another structure would hold 12 condo units, featuring underground parking and tentatively priced around $750,000.

The offices and residences all will offer great views, overlooking the country club and its greens, Wienner said.

The Country Club of Farmington didn't respond to repeated requests for comment.

In addition, the office building would be situated closer to Farmington Avenue/Route 4 “where it belongs to create more of a streetscape for the village,'' he said.

Timing for construction, Wienner said, also hinges around the state's plans to lay a new road to intersect High Street, running through the former Parsons Chevrolet site at the intersection with Farmington Avenue, where the old Chuck's driveway is now.

• • •

N. Britain apts. sold

The Campus View Apartments at 1300-1412 East St., in the shadow of New Britain's Central Connecticut State University, has sold for $4.73 million.

The 63-unit student apartments are at the entrance to CCSU.

The property opened in 1970 and was substantially updated and remodeled some 12 years ago, realty authorities say.

Hartford's Chozick Realty Inc. marketed the property on behalf Campus View Apartments LLC and brought the buyer, Trinity Property Group LLC, to the table.

Chozick said this is the fourth time it has brokered Campus View's sale.

• • •

CEO’s new Greenwich home

Corporate Executive Offices (CEO) signed a new lease in Greenwich to house its temporary office-sharing enterprise.

CEO signed for 24,593 square feet over 11 years at 75 Holly Hill Lane, the first major tenant since landlords ClearRock Properties and Artemis Real Estate Partners completed a $6 million renovation of the office building, authorities said.

Broker Cassidy Turley represented landlords in the lease. D.H. White Commercial Real Estate was the tenant's broker. Realty officials characterize it as the largest office lease in western Greenwich so far this year.

CEO will move from 2 Greenwich Office Park where it currently occupies 15,000 square-feet, officials said.

CEO subleases its office space to individuals and companies who need to use office space on a short term or temporary basis.

• • •

No. Haven beer warehouse

A Massachusetts beer distributor is entering the Connecticut market and has taken 12,637 square feet of warehouse-office space at 352 Sackett Point Road in North Haven.

The Craft Beer Guild Distributing of CT LLC division of distributor L. Knife & Son Inc., of Plymouth, Mass., is the tenant.

Their business is storing and distributing craft beers in 18 warehouses in seven other Atlantic stores and Wisconsin, according to L. Knife's homepage. Ryan Wells is Craft's general manager.

The landlord is Sackett Point IP Holdings LLC.

The Geenty Group Realtors was Craft's broker. CB Richard Ellis represented the landlord.

• • •

Sound Benefit’s relo

Sound Benefit Choices/Colonial Life inked a three-year lease for 1,500 square feet of offices at 163 Cedar St. in Branford.

The tenant is moving from Guilford.

Pearce Commercial represented Sound Benefit and landlord RCR Enterprises LLC in the lease.

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Greg Seay is the Hartford Business Journal News Editor.

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