“We try to see further than today’s use. We’re always asking, ‘How can we add value to what exists today?”Doug Wells, CEO, Broe Real Estate Group.
Broe Real Estate Group and its affiliates own and manage a multi-billion dollar commercial real estate portfolio spanning North America. The portfolio includes investments in the office, multifamily, industrial, retail, and land sectors.
Broe Real Estate Group’s managed investments are thoroughly underwritten and have a specific business plan, which is focused on asset stabilization and cash flow growth with a well-defined exit strategy. And it’s been that way for four decades.
Broe’s legacy is real estate investment: consistently creating value by spotting trends ahead of the curve, making risk-aware investments at the right time, and then developing and executing on business plans designed to enhance value and generate attractive risk-adjusted investment returns.
Broe’s fully-integrated operating platform includes acquisitions, construction management, asset management, leasing, property management and investment partnership capabilities.
One of the strengths of Broe Real Estate Group is the ability to recognize and capitalize on value-added opportunities in the commercial real estate space across multiple property sectors in every phase of the real estate investment cycle.
2013: Mile High Center at 1700 Broadway
Property Development at its Best
Denver’s first high-rise, the 23-story Mile High Center at 1700 Broadway, showed its age. In 2004 the fifty-year-old building was only 80% leased, and suffering along with the rest of the market.
Yet the I.M.Pei building and its iconic quarter-round atrium roofs still held promise.
$34 million worth of promise.
- A beautification campaign starting the day of closing, with widespread lighting and landscaping upgrades.
- Aggressive pursuit of leasing, based on keen market awareness.
- Paying to build a Starbucks in the lobby, despite the presence of another across the street, to dramatically boost tenant satisfaction.
- Upgrading three floors per year, on average.
A sale nine years later for almost twice the purchase price, at 97% occupancy.
2003: Great Western Industrial Park (GWIP)
Broe’s Great Western Railway moved only 500 cars each year.
But that line connected to both the UP and BNSF, and ran through hundreds of acres of Windsor farmland available for purchase—just when Owens-Illinois was evaluating candidate locations for its new plant.
- Active public and private partnerships, including a fast-track rezoning from agricultural to industrial, and a foreign-trade zone designation.
- Development of previously untapped water and mineral rights.
- Industry synergies to support Colorado’s burgeoning oil and gas plays.
- Aggressive development to exploit rail, energy, highway, terrain, and workforce access.
GWIP is a 1500-acre, master-planned development supporting over 2000 jobs, at employers like Vestas, Halliburton, and Cargill.
pivoting with times
Pivoting with the Times
The 6-mile MJ railway was a throw-in when Broe bought the assets of CWPT. For 80 years it had served the Hawthorne Works, where AT&T built America’s telephones. But that production had ceased a decade prior. The 1.2Msf of adjacent industrial space sat mostly vacant, with foreclosure imminent.
- Deeply discounted real estate purchase.
- Repurposing empty space for warehouse use, leveraging the MJ’s unique capacity to service it via rail, doubling the railroad income.
- Pivoting with the market, when a real estate opportunity surpassed the increased rail income.
The Hawthorne Works Shopping Center now operates on the property that Broe sold for over three times its purchase price. The MJ line remains an OmniTRAX asset.
1983: The Tabor Center
Reimagining a Downtown
In 1982, Denver’s new walking mall at 16th Street had just opened.
Seen from above, the granite pavings of the I.M. Pei-designed pedestrian promenade resembled a Diamondback rattlesnake. Seen from street level, its blocks between Arapahoe and Larimer showed all the weathered years of Denver’s history, but none of its charm.
- Orchestration of the development of The Tabor Center, a 700,000sf class AA mixed-use project integrating retail, office, and hotel space.
- Iconic glass-fronted, two-block, three-story shopping center, with novel indoor/outdoor pedestrian traffic flow.
In 1984, The Tabor Center opens as a retail centerpiece of the 16th Street Mall, giving downtown Denver its anchor and putting the city on the national retail map.