123rf.com: Vitaliy Vodolazskyy

May 6, 2016


NAI Horizon negotiates lease in Peoria

NAI Horizon’s Troy Giammarco and Nathan Pancrazi were instrumental in securing a new eight year lease of a 29,222 square-foot space for Huntington University’s Phoenix Campus for Digital Media Arts in the P83 Entertainment District.

Huntington University came to Giammarco and Pancrazi in August 2015 needing help with their Economic Development Agreement (EDA) with the City of Peoria after their original development site became economically unfeasible.

The University was intent on being open and operational by the fall of 2016. This gave NAI Horizon’s team a very small window of time to secure a lease and still allow the school time to apply for the necessary Department of Education approvals.

Giammarco and Pancrazi were tasked first with assisting the university in securing legal counsel to renegotiate their EDA to be portable and allow for the change of location. The University was seeking a 20,000 square-foot space that could grow to 30,000 square-feet, with easy access to mass transit, retail and apartment housing.

The facility would need to be retrofitted for digital media arts, turn-key, be architecturally distinct and have appropriate parking. Working hand-in-hand with the University team and the City of Peoria Economic Development Team, Giammarco and Pancrazi drove street-by-street to narrow a list of 24 potential properties to the six that fit within the parameters of the EDA. Huntington University narrowed the list down to three and NAI negotiated on all three properties.

The former Dolce Spa at 8353 W. Mariners Way met all the requirements of the university including the bonus of being located next to a Harkins’ Theatre, a venue the students on this campus would be aspiring to create media for. Unfortunately, the owner would only consider a sale. Using their connections and creativity, the NAI Horizon team provided Huntington University with 3 developers willing to purchase and redevelop the space for the campus. Ultimately NAI Horizon represented Glenwood Development along with Glenwood Realty Service to acquire the asset.

Simultaneously NAI Horizon represented Huntington University in their lease negotiations with the buyer Glenwood Development in earnest. The purchase of the property included incentives to the developer when the City of Peoria deemed the area an Enterprise Zone which helped subsidize the transition from Spa to School. Escrow closed on March 4, 2016, ratifying the lease in escrow in time for Huntington University to submit for their federal and state Department of Education approvals required for opening on schedule in the fall of 2016.

“Mr. Giammarco took the time to understand the type of space that Huntington needed for our unique digital media arts academic programs and worked diligently to find multiple options for our consideration. Several properties were brought to our attention only because of his efforts on our behalf. Ultimately it was a shared effort by the university, the city, the development group and NAI Horizon that made the Huntington University Arizona Center for Digital Media Arts in the P83 Entertainment District a reality.” said Jeff Berggren, director of operations, Huntington University.