Union Square retail building sells for $30M

Eyewear brand Oakley occupies part of ground floor at Market Street property

WhittierTrust's David A. Dahl and 838 Market Street in San Francisco (WhittierTrust, Loopnet)
WhittierTrust's David A. Dahl and 838 Market Street in San Francisco (WhittierTrust, Loopnet)

The Whittier Trust Company of Nevada sold a Union Square retail property that houses a location for eyewear store Oakley.

The property, at 838-842 Market Street changed, hands in a $30 million deal, records show. The assemblage is composed of two parcels, according to city records. The 838 Market Street portion contains a 39,999-square-foot building;  842 Market Street  offers another 14,300 feet of space.

Oakley occupies the ground floor retail space at the 842 Market Street site.

Athletic gear brand Converse was previously the tenant at the 838 Market Street. The ground floor retail space in that property, which totals 26,305 square feet, is currently being marketed for lease, according to a listing from Cushman & Wakefield.

The buyer is a joint venture led by 838 Market Exchange, LLC, which is managed by an executive identified as Michael Woods. The entity holds a 75 percent stake in the property. The minority partners for the asset include investment firm Aralon Properties and the Ward Family Trust, which is controlled by Emmet Brendan Ward and Lorraine Gallagher Ward.

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The property was previously owned by landlord Edward Litke. Litke died in 2016. In January of 2021, a San Francisco court appointed Reno-based Whittier Trust of Nevada as the sole successor trustee for the entity that owned the Market Street property, records show.

The deal comes as San Francisco’s retail market continues a crawl to recovery. In the first quarter of this year, the overall retail vacancy rate in the city dropped for the first time since 2020, according to Cushman & Wakefield. During the period, the vacancy rate was at 5.1 percent, compared with 5.3 percent from the same time last year. The Union Square area, meanwhile, appeared to stabilize with the annual rental rate for prime ground floor retail space remaining unchanged at $495 per square foot.

Michael Woods could not be reached. Aralon Properties did not respond to a request for comment.