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Pettinaro puts Christina Crescent up for sale

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Pettinaro has put the Christina Crescent building at the Riverfront on the market. | PHOTO COURTESY OF PETTINARO

WILMINGTON – The Christina Crescent, one of the Riverfront’s most unique buildings, has been put on the market, according to its owner, Pettinaro Company.

The 13-year-old office building is home to Barclays Bank’s Delaware operations, which recently announced that it was adding several hundred call center positions to the location. The building’s office space is fully leased by Barclays, but some ground-floor retail vacancies exist.

Greg Pettinaro, CEO of the namesake construction, design, and management firm, confirmed that the building located at 129 S. West St. was for sale. He told Delaware Business Times that the decision was made to move the 279,000-square-foot Class A trophy building to free up attention for the firm’s Barley Mill redevelopment project and others in its pipeline.

“The Crescent building is a quality asset with great cash flow and a long-term AAA tenant. For our portfolio, it is time to move on to other things,” Pettinaro added.

Barclays Bank is the long-term tenant of the Christina Crescent, which should boost its sale value. | DBT PHOTO BY JACOB OWENS

The unlisted sale comes with a requirement to sign a non-disclosure agreement before viewing marketing materials. No asking price has been publicly disclosed. Bids will be solicited in about two weeks, Pettinaro said.

The brokerage handling the sale is the Wilmington office of Newmark, a Big 3 commercial real estate brokerage formerly known as Newmark Knight Frank.

“Newmark is pleased to be the exclusive agent marketing the Christina Crescent office building on the Wilmington Riverfront, which offers a dynamic live, work, play location,” said Neal F. Dangello, senior managing director at Newmark’s Wilmington office, in a statement. “The Christina Crescent offers a unique opportunity being an investment grade, single-tenant office building designed and built for Barclays Bank Delaware. It’s a true trophy class asset garnering interest from both domestic and foreign investors.”

In the brokerage’s third quarter leasing report for the Wilmington market, Newmark said that “like similar Class A, single-tenant office properties that sold locally last year, [the Crescent building] is expected to draw strong interest from a plethora of national and international buyers searching for a safe, quality investment.”

Leasing in Wilmington has remained steady compared to larger metropolitan areas despite the COVID-19 pandemic and the city’s Riverfront and central business district have seen increasing interest in investments in the last year.

In October 2019, the PNC Bank Center was sold for $24 million, while the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the District of Delaware’s home at 824 N. Market St. was sold for $16 million in April. In May, Amtrak acquired the Renaissance Centre for an undisclosed sum, likely also in the eight figures.

At the Riverfront, a New Jersey insurance company bought 1 Avenue of the Arts for $4.3 million, while CSC bought the Pennsylvania Railroad Building for $4.8 million, both in February.

The Christina Crescent will likely draw even more interest due to Barclays’ long-term investment in the building with the new call center, the large size of the space and its architectural design. Sitting at the focal gateway to the Riverfront area, the building won numerous awards for its design that features an open-air leg on its eastern side.

By Jacob Owens


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