Apartment building with retail space brings nearly $1.5M

134-136 South Union Street located in Middletown, Pa. The 17-unit mixed-use building sold for $1,493,500. PHOTO/PROVIDED

A 17-unit mixed-use building in Middletown has sold for $1.493 million, according to Marcus & Millichap, the commercial real estate brokerage firm that handled the transaction.

The listing, at 134-136 S. Union St., was acquired by One Tower Properties LLC. The seller was Steve Kancahian.

On 0.28 acres, it includes a studio apartment, three one-bedroom/one-bathroom units, 10 two-bedroom/one-bathroom units, two three-bedroom/one-bathroom units and a retail space.

“Despite the rise in interest rates, our team has noticed that the overall demand within the apartments sector has been steadily increasing throughout the first couple quarters of 2022,” Jeremy P. Ryan, a multifamily investment sales specialist with Marcus & Millichap’s Philadelphia office, said in a release.

“The various value-add components, paired with a strong tenant mix and prime location in downtown Middletown, caught the attention of numerous multifamily investors seeking inventory in a market that’s lacking supply today. For this transaction, we were able to create a competitive bidding environment and ultimately select an all-cash buyer to get this deal across the finish line.”

Paula Wolf is a freelance writer

West Manchester Town Center sold for $42.5M

JLL Capital Markets announced this week that it closed the sale of West Manchester Town Center, a 488,037-square-foot retail complex in York County.

A Paramount Realty Joint Venture purchased the property for $42.5 million, BizNewsPA reported. JLL represented the seller, ATR Corinth Partners.

“We at ATR Corinth are excited about the redevelopment of West Manchester Town Center into a dynamic retail center that will serve the community for decades,” Partner Tony Ruggeri said in a release. “As with any project of this size, we would like to thank the officials at West Manchester Township, the Redevelopment Authority of York County and the residents of the township and county for their support in this transformation.” Based in Lakewood, New Jersey, Paramount Realty owns and operates a portfolio of more than 15 million square feet throughout the Northeast, including other retail centers in central Pennsylvania.

On 94.1 acres, West Manchester Town Center is at 415 Town Center Drive and features such national retailers as Kohl’s, At Home, HomeGoods, Hobby Lobby and Burlington.

The release noted that the property drew more than 4.2 million customer visits over the last year, the second most visits to an open-air shopping center within a 15-mile radius.

“We have seen renewed demand for best-in-class power centers over the last 24 months, which speaks to the positive macro performance of big box retailers as we exited the pandemic,” added JLL Senior Director Chris Behr.

“With an extremely competitive bid process, West Manchester is a perfect example of this ongoing trend.”

Paula Wolf is a freelance writer.

Armstrong Flooring files for bankruptcy

Armstrong Flooring’s Lancaster campus consists of its corporate offices and design center. The company employs 420 people in Lancaster County. PHOTO/IOANNIS PASHAKIS

Armstrong Flooring has filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy as it continues to search for a buyer. 

The Lancaster-based flooring designer and manufacturer announced the decision on Monday as it reached a deadline with lenders to either sell or refinance the company to repay outstanding loans. 

Armstrong Flooring noted that it was weighing the option of bankruptcy protection in a report with the United States Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) last week after receiving a week-long extension to its deadline. 

The company retained Los Angeles-based investment banking firm, Houlihan Lokey Capital, late last year to help with the sale of the company and the consideration of other strategic options, but had failed to finalize a purchase or merger agreement by its May 8 deadline. 

Armstrong Flooring said in a statement on Monday that it will continue to seek a sale of the company during the bankruptcy process. 

“Armstrong Flooring filed for voluntary Chapter 11 protection in order to execute an efficient and value-maximizing sale of the business,” said an Armstrong Flooring spokesperson. “Armstrong Flooring is open for business and remains firmly committed to our customers, vendors and employees as we navigate the path forward.” 

The flooring manufacturer reported a loss of $53 million in 2021, adding to the company’s accumulated deficit of $356.2 million. The company’s stock price was at $.29 at the close of trading on Friday, prior to the announcement of the bankruptcy, a drop from $1.64 on April 29. 

Michel Vermette, president and CEO at Armstrong Flooring, attributed the losses to a number of “macroeconomic trends,” including supply chain challenges, the current inflationary environment, and continued headwinds from the pandemic. 

“With the support of our board of directors, we have determined that using the Chapter 11 process to effectuate a potential sale is the right next step for our company,” said Vermette. “As we have said previously, we firmly believe in the value and potential of Armstrong Flooring—and we are confident that this definitive action puts us in the best possible position to preserve and maximize value for our stakeholders.” 

The credit agreement, if approved by bankruptcy court, would provide for $30 million of debtor-in-possession financing, providing Armstrong Flooring with the liquidity to operate and cover administrative expenses as it pursues a sale. 

The company’s businesses in China and Australia will not be included in the Chapter 11 filing, but are part of the sale process. Armstrong Flooring employs 1680 people with 340 people in China, 110 in Australia and 420 in Lancaster County.


Lancaster industrial property sells for $23.9 million 

A newly-built industrial building at 701 Stony Battery Road, Lancaster. PHOTO/PROVIDED

A newly-built industrial building at 701 Stony Battery Road, Lancaster has been purchased for $23.9 million, according to documents filed with the Lancaster County Recorder of Deeds. 

The 251,250-square-foot industrial building was purchased from Catalyst Commercial Development, which oversaw the entitlement process and constructed the asset. Lee & Associates of Eastern Pennsylvania (LAEP) orchestrated the sale and did not disclose the buyer of the property. 

The facility features 36-foot clear ceiling heights, 49 loading docks and ample parking capacity, according to LAEP. 

“The building’s exceptional location combined with best-in-class design and the limited amount of Class A product in the Route 283 Corridor attracted the buyer to the opportunity,” said Robert Yoshimura, a principal at LAEP. “Additionally, the site’s infill location was desirable due to the rapid growth of the Lancaster submarket, forecasted population growth, and a robust logistics infrastructure network.” 

East Hempfield Township approved the facility along with 791 Stony Battery Road in March 2021. 701 finished construction in mid March and LAEP closed the sale on April 25. 

The new owner of the facility has already leased the space out, according to Connor Sanbower, an associate at LAEP. 

“It was a smooth transition,” said Sanbower. “With market conditions as they are, it was a rewarding investment for this firm to go for.” 

ENB Financial reports decline in net income, increase in assets

ENB Financial Corp., the bank holding company for Ephrata National Bank, reported net income of $3.191 million for the first quarter, down 29.2% from a year ago.

Higher net interest income and a lower provision for loan losses were more than offset by lower operating income and higher operating expenses, a release explained.

National Bank operates 13 locations in Lancaster County, southeastern Lebanon County and southern Berks County.

For the three months ending March 31, ENB Financial’s net interest income increased 10.8% compared with the same period in 2021. And interest expense on deposits and borrowings decreased 19.7%.

The corporation recorded a provision for loan losses of $100,000 in the first quarter of 2022, compared with $375,000 for the first quarter of 2021.

Other quarterly income fell $1.642 million, or 30.9%, compared with the prior year, primarily due to a 61.9% decline in gains on the sale of mortgages. “Mortgage production was stable in 2022 compared to 2021, but the rapid market rate increases have affected the margin the corporation is able to obtain on the sale of mortgages,” the release noted.

Also, total operating expenses increased $1.421 million, or 15.5%, as salary and benefit expenses jumped 14.3%.

As of March 31, ENB Financial reported assets of $1.71 billion, up 11.3% from a year ago; loans of $950.6 million, up 12.9%; deposits of $1.52 billion, up 14.5%; and stockholders’ equity of $116 million, down 9.9%.

Montgomery County retail center sells for $161 million

A Bethesda-based real estate firm and its partner have bought a 760,000-square-foot retail center in the Greater Philadelphia region for $161.75 million, the companies announced Friday.

Finmarc Management, Inc. partnered with New York-based investment and operating firm KPR Centers on the acquisition.

Providence Town Center, which is in Collegeville, a town northwest of Philadelphia, first opened in 2009 and features 11 anchor tenants, led by a Wegmans Food Markets. The center has 70 tenants, including retail, dining, medical and more. The center is on 82 acres of land at 100 Town Center.

“The new ownership team has plans for improvements to the center to drive a higher velocity of customer traffic to the already busy Town Center,” Finmarc Principal and Co-Founder David Fink said in a news release. “This strategy and preliminary activity have already garnered interest from additional national and regional tenants looking to establish a presence at Providence Town Center.”

The shopping center is well-positioned for future success, the companies said, with the surrounding communities having a growing population of just under 125,000. Nearby residential communities have expanded by more than 42% in the past two decades, and a 700-unit apartment project is planned.

The shopping center is also adjacent to Route 422, which almost 65,000 vehicles travel daily, and Route 29, which about 20,000 vehicles travel daily.

“Providence Town Center in an institutional-quality regional shopping center and, with more than a dozen high-performing anchor tenants including Wegmans Food Markets, is among the dominant retail venues in the greater Philadelphia trade area,” Fink said. “The surrounding demographics led by an ever-growing residential population, together with the presence of major employers and employment centers, provide us with tremendous confidence about the asset’s long-term performance.”

This follows another Philadelphia-area transition by the two companies; late last year, Finmarc and KPR sold Red Lion Plaza, a shopping center at 9950 Roosevelt Boulevard in Philadelphia for $56.45 million that had been owned by a joint venture of the two companies since 2013. The identity of the buyers was not disclosed.

The firm has also recently broken into the North Carolina market through the $58 million acquisition of a 383,000-square-foot retail center in Raleigh.