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  • Writer's pictureAndre Watson

34-story Rittenhouse Square apartment tower comes up for sale

The 34-story apartment tower at 2116 Chestnut St.

A 34-story apartment tower just west of Rittenhouse Square is up for sale, another property that could be switching ownership in a quickly changing pocket of Center City.

The 321-unit building at 2116 Chestnut St. was developed by Chicago-based John Buck Co. in 2013 and sold two years later to its current owner, CBRE Investments.

2116 Chestnut is being marketed by brokerage JLL as a restore-to-core, or value-add, opportunity. A potential new buyer could renovate kitchens and bathrooms, which could lead to higher rents more on par with newer buildings in the surrounding area.

The tower sold for around $160 million in 2015. The property was assessed this year at $144 million.

The building has had an average occupancy of 94% since 2017 and is currently 99% occupied, according to JLL marketing materials. There’s been a 7.7% rent increase on the last 25 new leases and a 3.9% increase on the last 25 renewals.

Rents start at $2,312 for a studio and run as high as $17,196 for a two-bedroom unit, the building's website shows. The Ground-floor retail space is occupied by Five Iron Golf and workout studio Solidcore.

An asking price for 2116 Chestnut is unclear. In other parts of Center City, the 304-unit St. James apartment building near Washington Square, traded for more than $220 million last year in one of the largest apartment building sales in Philadelphia history. A year before, the 612-unit 1500 Locust St. apartment tower sold for more than $230 million.

1216 Chestnut faces First Unitarian Church of Philadelphia. Several projects are in the planning phase nearby, including a Dranoff Properties residential development at an existing Sunoco gas station site at 2201 Walnut St., a Trammell Crow Co. development at the site of a former Rite Aid at 2301 Walnut St. and Flamingo Bay Investments’ proposed 10-story commercial and residential building at 2204 Walnut St.

Law firm Morgan Lewis & Bockius is nearing its move to 2222 Market St., a brand new 19-story office building. Breakthrough Properties is also building an eight-story, 220,000-square-foot life sciences building at 2300 Market St.

Elsewhere in the neighborhood, a 26-unit apartment portfolio clustered around 22nd and Walnut streets recently sold for $4.3 million.

The three-story office building at 2200 Walnut St. is also up for sale, along with three buildings at 2007-11 Walnut St., the site of the former Irish Pub.

JLL’s Fran Coyne, Carl Fiebig, Jose Cruz, Samantha Kupersmith and Tyler Margraf have the listing.

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