National law firm joins Novitas Solutions, Amec Foster Wheeler, Jawbone and Truefit at newly revitalized landmark in the heart of Pittsburgh’s Mellon Square
PITTSBURGH – FEBRUARY 1, 2016 – The Davis Companies (TDC) announced today that it has executed a 16,000-square-foot lease at the historic Union Trust Building with Blank Rome LLP, a multi-disciplinary law firm with offices throughout the U.S. and in China. Blank Rome expects to move its Pittsburgh team into its new, permanent space this summer. TDC is investing approximately $100 million to update and restore this iconic architectural landmark – located at 501 Grant Street in the heart of Pittsburgh’s Mellon Square. When completed, the building will be a lively hub and destination with contemporary offices, prime retail and restaurants, market leading amenities and social gathering spaces that complements the area’s ongoing transformation.
“Blank Rome is a terrific addition to the community of dynamic companies making their home in the newly revitalized Union Trust Building,” said Jonathan G. Davis, CEO and founder of The Davis Companies. “The resurgence of the Mellon Square area matches our vision for this prime asset. The two combine to create a highly desirable destination to do business in Pittsburgh’s city center.”
“We are thrilled that we will call the landmark Union Trust Building our new home in 2016,” said George M. Medved, Administrative Partner of the Pittsburgh Office. “As a Pittsburgh native, I can say without a doubt that this is the perfect location for Blank Rome’s presence here. The downtown location, vibrant and thriving area, and historic setting coupled with state-of-the-art amenities are ideal for serving our clients and accommodating our growth in the market in 2016 and beyond.”
Blank Rome will join Truefit, a Pittsburgh-based software technology innovation firm, and Jawbone, a world-leader in consumer technology and wearable devices, as well as the global engineering and project management firm Amec Foster Wheeler, and medical payments processing firm Novitas Solutions as the newest tenants at the Union Trust Building
Constructed in 1917 by the industrialist Henry Clay Frick, The Union Trust Building’s Flemish-Gothic design makes it one of the most prominent pieces of the city’s architectural heritage. TDC is working with Pittsburgh-based construction manager Mascaro to assure that the building’s unique features are preserved, including cleaning the building’s decorative sandstone exterior cladding; restoring its intricate terra cotta mansard roof, utilizing the same terra cotta molds used by Henry Clay Frick’s craftsmen in the early 1900s, and installing LED lights to brighten the soaring 150-foot-high rotunda’s intricate stained glass skylight.
The fully renovated property, which is being renovated as a Certified Historic Rehabilitation under the demanding standards of the U.S. Department of the Interior and is on track to be completed this year, will boast more than 500,000-square-feet of Class-A retail, office, tech-startup and amenity space, offering tenants a dynamic, modern work environment in the heart of Pittsburgh’s newly reinvigorated downtown area. TDC has repositioned nearly 40,000-square-feet of ground-level retail space to establish an indoor and outdoor environment, lined with restaurants, cafes and coffee shops for tenant and public use. TDC is also building a 190 space underground parking garage with onsite bicycle storage, as well as a 5,000 square-foot, state-of-the-art fitness center. The building’s 80-seat conference facility and 400-seat auditorium are both being completely renovated and brought to 21st century standards. The building is directly adjacent to the Mellon Bank Center light rail public transit stop and numerous bus lines, so it is easily accessible by public transportation. Centrally located in Mellon Square, it is also surrounded by boutiques, eateries, residential properties, hotels and parks.
The Davis Companies was represented in the transaction by Jason Stewart, Executive Vice President at JLL. Blank Rome was represented by Richard Cassetti, Senior Vice President at Cushman & Wakefield | Grant Street Associates.
TDC is known across the country for its outstanding repositioning work. Other properties TDC has transformed into prime work environments include: The Center at Corporate Drive in Burlington, MA, which TDC transformed into a 485,000 sf contemporary office campus with cutting-edge amenities; The Westport Center for Health in Westport, CT, where TDC adapted a former five building office complex to create a much needed medical office center; The River City Residence portfolio, consisting of 29 residential buildings in Richmond, VA, which TDC is renovating to completely transform the buildings’ interiors and exteriors, and Crosspoint at Valley forge in Wayne, PA, which TDC upgraded to create a 275,000 square foot, Class A, LEED Gold-certified and Energy Star-rated office building.
About The Davis Companies
Committed to excellence in both investment performance and operations, The Davis Companies is an integrated real estate investment, development and management firm headquartered in Boston that has invested nearly $4 billion in gross asset value through real estate equity, debt, and fixed-income securities. A unique combination of capital markets, development and management expertise allows The Davis Companies to nimbly tackle complex and contrarian opportunities. Directly, and with its valued partners, The Davis Companies currently owns a real estate portfolio of approximately 12 million square feet across the Eastern United States.
Contact: Lauren Michaels