Ellsworth Place BOUNCEPATH MARKETING

A Tennessee-based commercial developer last week bought downtown Silver Spring’s Ellsworth Place in a $92 million deal that gave the purchaser rights to add office space to the mall.

The five-story mall that recently underwent renovation boasts retailers such as Marshalls, T.J. Maxx and Forever 21 and features a Dave & Buster’s and Guitar Center. The retail center’s owners, Petrie Richardson Ventures and Rockwood Capital, put it up for sale last year, and GBT Realty Corporation bought the 350,000-square-foot property on July 20.

“GBT was particularly attracted to this property due to its dense, urban setting that drives significant traffic to the center as well as the exceptionally high barriers to entry limiting opportunity for new competitive development,” Scott Porter, managing director of Capital Holdings at GBT, said in a prepared statement.

Along with the property itself, GBT acquired the air rights to build up to 250,000 square feet of office space on top of Ellsworth Place, according to a news release.

The mall is 93 percent leased, with about 24,000 square feet of retail space still available, the release stated.

“Not only does the available space enable us to bring additional popular brands and amenities to the center … but we expect to create asset value as rents are renegotiated to current market levels as leases expire,” Fraser Schaufele, director of leasing at GBT Realty, said in the release.

GBT bought the center in partnership with Massachusetts-based Equity Resource Investments and Chilean investor Avante Financial Group, according to the release.

Newmark Knight Frank represented Rockwood and Petrie Richardson, and Rialto provided financing.

GBT, a national commercial development and investment company based in Brentwood, Tennessee, now has a portfolio worth $160 million with the addition of Ellsworth Place, according to the news release.

Bethany Rodgers can be reached at bethany.rodgers@bethesdamagazine.com.