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Whitestone REIT (NYSE: WSR – “Whitestone” or the “Company”), a real estate investment trust which operates Community Centered Properties
TM, today announced that it launched four property redevelopment and repositioning programs in its Houston, Texas, region.
Whitestone intends to reposition existing properties and capitalize on market demand resulting in increased rental rates from new tenants and adding value for existing tenants. At a $60 per square foot cost basis (undepreciated), and a strong local economy our Houston portfolio is well-positioned for significant redevelopment opportunities. The Company’s value-add business model and its rebranding strategies primarily target tenants which provide needed services to the surrounding communities. We believe these efforts will result in strengthened overall property revenues, increasing net operating income, return on investment, and funds from operations per share.
The Houston properties being repositioned, redeveloped, and rebranded are:
Woodlake Plaza, a 106,000 square foot community office building located near the Westchase District;
Main Park, a 113,000 square foot community center located near Reliant Stadium and the Texas Medical Center, targeting medical labs,
Lion Square, a 118,000 square foot retail community center located in the Asian district in southwest Houston; and,
Torrey Square, a 106,000 square foot retail center located in one of the predominately Latino districts in north Houston.
"The four properties selected for redevelopment have the potential to produce exceptional returns on our modest capital investment in the near term,” said James C. Mastandrea, Whitestone’s Chairman and CEO. Mastandrea continued: “Considering their low cost basis and advantageous locations, these properties have significant intrinsic value, and should benefit from Houston’s vibrant economy.” Mastandrea added: “We intend to grow our enterprise value and leverage our team’s unique skills by timing our value-add activities with the opportunities resulting from the real estate cycles in our markets.” Mastandrea concluded, “To further drive value, over the coming quarters, we expect to balance additional redevelopment efforts to extract intrinsic value in our properties with acquisitions of off-market properties to enhance returns to our shareholders.”