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Marvin Davis, J. H. Snyder Join on Huge Project

Times Staff Writer

Billionaire Marvin Davis, through a real estate development company he controls, has become a partner in the $450-million Water Garden office complex now under development in Santa Monica, its developer said Monday.

Miller-Klutznick-Davis-Gray Co. has become an equal partner with J. H. Snyder Co. in Water Garden. The Davis involvement has been crucial in the financing of the 1.26-million-square-foot complex, which is located on a 17-acre site at Olympic Boulevard and 26th Street.

“Through his efforts, we have been able to get a $230-million construction loan with Citicorp (Real Estate Inc.) and Bank of America on phase one” of the four-building project, Jerome H. Snyder, founding partner of J. H. Snyder Co., said in a telephone interview.

Talk Over Breakfast

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Snyder said he began talking to Davis, who he has known “many years,” about the Water Garden over breakfast one morning at the Tamarsk Country Club near Palm Springs. “This is the largest development in West Los Angeles. It is too big for any one person, as far as I’m concerned. We got to talking, (and) we’d thought we do this one together.”

Excavation for the first phase of the Water Garden, which was begun before construction financing was in place, was completed recently. Snyder had elected to secure the funds before leasing space in the building. Builders typically pre-lease space in a building prior to construction to secure construction financing.

“It is difficult to get this amount of financing in place prior to having leased the place,” he explained. “We wanted to build the project prior to pre-leasing.” Snyder said if potential tenants know they are needed to secure financing, they push for better leasing terms. He said the $230-million loan now “positions us nicely to go forward with the project.”

Miller-Klutznick-Davis-Gray Co. will be responsible for marketing and leasing of Water Garden, while J. H. Snyder Co. will oversee construction activities. The first phase of the project includes two office buildings, or 700,000 square feet of office space, plus 2,500 parking spaces. It is scheduled to open in spring of 1991.

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J. H. Snyder Co. developed the Wilshire Courtyard in the Miracle Mile area. Miller-Klutznick-Davis-Gray Co. built the Fox Plaza in Century City. Davis is one of two general partners of the firm; the other is longtime Davis business associate Gerald S. Gray.


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