Basin Street reinvests in Petaluma

  • Thomas Birdsall, regional partner with Basin Street Properties, at the trio of buildings the company recently purchased in Petaluma.

Basin Street Properties, the Petaluma-born development firm that helped establish the city as a telecom hub and transformed downtown before moving its headquarters to Reno two years ago, is reinvesting in Petaluma.

In the past four months, Basin Street has spent $21 million to reacquire eight Redwood Business Park buildings it sold in 2005, including three it is purchasing today.

Last year, Basin Street acquired the Marina Business Center, which consists of 116,000 square feet in three office buildings.

The deals mark a significant reinvestment into Petaluma's struggling real estate market, said Matt White, Basin Street's president.

"We've always been very committed to Sonoma County," he said. "Even at that time (2009), we left about half of our employees in the Petaluma office. We have been adding people in the Petaluma office over the last year and with this acquisition, we should be adding another person."

The eight buildings include five purchased in March for $8 million on North McDowell Boulevard and Redwood Way, and three in today's deal worth about $13 million, according to the company.

The newest acquisitions include 210,000 square feet in three properties at 1400 and 1420 N. McDowell and 5341 Old Redwood Highway.

The office buildings purchased in March were 40 percent occupied, with major tenants including Wells Fargo Bank, the U.S. Department of Agriculture and Force 10, formerly known as Turin Networks.

Each of the three new buildings are vacant. They formerly housed Alcatel and Digilock.

Signing on as the first tenant in the new buildings is Enphase Energy, a Petaluma startup that makes solar components and recently announced plans to go public with a stock offering worth up to $100 million.

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