Kinko's Lease Boosts Occupancy at Oxnard's Town Center

The new owner of the long-troubled 1000 Town Center office building in Oxnard has leased nearly half of the 110,000-square-foot structure to the parent company of the Kinko's copying chain.

The long-term lease is valued at about $5 million, close to the $5.1 million that Bedford Property Investors Inc., a Northern California real estate investment trust, paid last December when it purchased the modern green glass building from Citicorp.

Citicorp had taken possession from the developers, who reportedly spent as much as $19 million on the project, which was completed in 1991. The structure is in the Oxnard Town Center, which never lived up to its developers' vision of a $500-million project that would be the largest commercial development in Ventura County.

The six-story office building overlooking the Ventura Freeway, just north of the intersection with Pacific Coast Highway, was only 41% occupied until Kinko's Service Corp., based in Ventura, signed a lease last week for the third and fourth floors and most of the first floor. With the new tenant, 1000 Town Center will be 90% leased.

William G. Kiefer, a broker with Grubb & Ellis Commercial Real Estate Services in Oxnard, who represented Bedford, said Kinko's will occupy 51,000 square feet of the structure. The copying firm's national accounts receivable and other operations will start moving in immediately, with the entire move scheduled to be completed by late summer, Kiefer added.

"We're happy to have made the deal, but on the other hand there's very little top-quality office space left that's for lease or sale in western Ventura County," Kiefer said. He noted that another large Oxnard building, the never-occupied Chevron USA structure, recently was acquired by GTE California for use as a customer-service center.

Kiefer estimated that the higher-end office-vacancy rate in western Ventura County now stands at about 16%, down from 22% last September.

Adrianna Foss, Kinko's vice president of human relations and development, said 125 of the firm's 500 headquarters employees will move to 1000 Town Center initially. Kinko's has been short of space at its corporate headquarters in west Ventura and hopes to expand that facility if official approvals can be obtained, she added. The company has 700 outlets worldwide.

John Papini, vice president of acquisitions of Bedford Property Investors, said the company is seeking suburban office buildings and industrial properties throughout the West. "We'd definitely be interested in acquiring another building in Ventura County," he added.

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