Fremont tech park development at stalled Asian mall gets new owner

FREMONT — The site of a long-stalled Asian-themed retail mall where a tech park is

FREMONT — The site of a long-stalled Asian-themed retail mall where a tech park is now proposed has been bought by a big Colorado investment firm, the second time in weeks that the property has landed a new owner.

A 22.5-acre site near the corner of Albrae Street and Stevenson Boulevard in Fremont that’s a short distance from Interstate 880 has been bought by an affiliate headed up by Ares Management, a private equity firm with a range of real estate holdings.

Denver-based Ares Management’s affiliate paid $83.3 million for the property, documents filed May 12 with the Alameda County Recorder’s Office show.

The site is slated to be redeveloped with 397,000 square feet of industrial space through the construction of three buildings at 40525 Albrae St., according to Fremont city planning records.

It appears the seller of four parcels on Albrae Street where the development would occur harvested a profit on the property deal as a result of the most recent sale, based on what the seller paid in early April.

Scannell Properties, the seller, paid $52.5 million to buy the four parcels, according to Alameda County documents filed on April 4. However, it’s possible the difference in the two purchase prices could represent, at least in part, Scannell Properties’ fee to be the developer of the property on behalf of the new owner, Ares Management.

Ares has hired Scannell Properties to be the developer of the site, according to a development agreement that was referenced in an Alameda County public document.

The Globe retail and restaurant complex at the corner of Albrae Street and Stevenson Boulevard was born as a grand concept of a mall with multiple villages that would exemplify different facets of Asian culture.

But the economic destruction unleashed by the Great Recession eventually torpedoed those plans and only a section of the retail and restaurant complex was developed.

Indianapolis-based Scannell, the developer of the industrial project, called Tech Center @ 880, believes that project could produce significant community benefits for Fremont, including hundreds of jobs.

“300 to 650-plus permanent jobs to support tenant operations in manufacturing or distribution” could be created as a result of the project, Scannell stated in a March presentation to Fremont city officials.

Ares Management’s ownership could bring the project plenty of financial resources to underpin the construction. Over the 12 months ended in March, Ares captured $361.2 million in profits on revenue of $4.27 billion, according to the Yahoo Finance site.

An estimated 350 to 400 temporary jobs would be created during the anticipated 11-month construction period, according to Scannell’s assessment. Those temporary and permanent jobs could bolster merchants in the vicinity.

“Neighboring retailers, which are largely restaurant-based, would reap the benefit of potentially 650 daily employees patronizing their businesses,” Scannell stated in the presentation to the city.

Fremont tech park redevelopment at stalled Asian mall gets new owner — again