Investor buys building on downtown Ann Arbor's South Fourth Avenue after foreclosure
Courtney Sacco | AnnArbor.com
212 4th Ave. LLC, registered to Joe Barbat, purchased the mixed-use Town Center Plaza building at 210-216 S. Fourth Ave. from lender Bloomfield Capital, which foreclosed on it earlier this year.
“We’re just getting the architect to give us an idea of what we have to do (moving forward),” said Jim Chaconas of Colliers International Ann Arbor, which represented the buyer and seller in the deal. “Structurally, (the building is) fine.”
Bloomfield Capital initiated foreclosure proceedings on the property in July 2012 after the building’s former owner, local landlord Dale Newman, failed to make mortgage payments. Filings show Newman owed the lender $1,291,089.
Earlier this year, Bloomfield Capital took full control of the building following a redemption period and Birmingham-based real estate firm Broder & Sachse took over management of the property to position it for a sale.
Chaconas declined to reveal the purchase price of the building and Barbat — whose Southfield-based company Barbat Holdings LLC owns and manages several Ann Arbor properties — couldn’t be reached for comment. The building has a 2013 assessed value of $766,500.
“I had a few people who were interested (in buying it),” Chaconas said.
“(The building) has some great features; it has very high ceilings on the second floor,” he added.”
The sale comes two months after the 17-year-old Eastern Accents Asian bakery closed its doors at 214 S. Fourth citing a dispute with the landlord. At the time, Eastern Accents co-owner Carol Sun said she had extensive issues with the way the building was managed by Newman and said it was plagued with maintenance issues that were often ignored.
Meanwhile, the lease for the Blue Lotus hookah lounge and carryout restaurant that planned to open at 210 S. Fourth was terminated while the building was in transition, Chaconas said.
Ken Sing, owner of Bandito's Mexican Restaurant, said he hopes to remain in the building under the new owners.
"I'm just hoping it's for the best," he said.
Chaconas estimated the second floor of the building is about 30 percent leased and the first floor is about 25 percent leased. Colliers has been hired to take over the leasing of the building.
He said the new owner is working with architect Brad Moore of J Bradley Moore & Associates to determine how to move forward. He said the building could be gutted and the new owner is considering expansion options, but it shouldn’t result in any immediate changes for the building’s current tenants.