Walton Street Capital unloads retail ‘power center’ in Houston

Grocery-anchored strip mall bought by Wu Properties

2660 Eldridge Parkway South (Google Maps)
2660 Eldridge Parkway South (Google Maps)

Walton Street Capital has sold Market Square at Eldridge Parkway to Wu Properties.

The retail center is a 262,556-square-foot retail center with big-box tenants such as Burlington, Michael’s, Party City, PetSmart, Dollar Tree, HomeGoods, Bath & Body Works, Ulta Beauty, Cato, Old Navy and Office Depot.

The roughly 32-acre property was 98 percent leased at the time the deal closed for an undisclosed price in late June, according to the Houston Chronicle. It has an appraised value of more than $44 million. Though the complex also includes a Target and a vacant Sam’s Club, the building leased by those two stores were not included in the transaction.

Market Square receives considerable foot traffic. It ranks among the top 5 percent of U.S. shopping centers for foot traffic, according to commercial real estate company JLL, citing cellphone data from retail analytics firm Placer.Ai.

With the addition of Market Square to its portfolio, Wu has more than 2.5 million square feet of retail space, mostly in the Houston area, including the recently acquired Willowchase Center in northwest Houston. Representative Kirt Rimpela says the company expects to continue snapping up retail sites throughout the region this year.

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When asked about the looming recession, Rimpela told the Chronicle it had “no impact” on the purchase or the firm’s “future outlook for Houston retail.”

“For the most part, investor demand for Texas retail in the last three months has not dissipated enough to affect pricing in a significant way,” said Ryan West, senior managing director at JLL. Last quarter, there were $1.1 billion in retail property sales in Houston— the fourth-highest quarter for sales volume since 2006, according to CoStar.

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[Houston Chronicle] — Maddy Sperling