Real Estate News

Grocers group acquires historic downtown Sacramento building

A busy FedEx store fronts the century-old building that was sold on Thursday.
A busy FedEx store fronts the century-old building that was sold on Thursday. Newmark Cornish & Carey

In another real estate deal sparked by downtown’s resurgence, the California Grocers Association has acquired a century-old building at 12th and J streets to serve eventually as its Sacramento headquarters.

The $3 million purchase of the two-story, 20,544-square-foot building fronted by a busy FedEx Office store was completed on Thursday.

Butch Corum, the building’s seller, said he opted to put it on the market because he is “winding down” his real estate business and “with all the activity downtown it seemed like the right time to sell.”

Now surrounded by mostly newer structures, the building opened as a single-story retail site in 1925 at 1005 12th St., just down the block from the city’s first public market at 13th and J streets.

Corum said his father, Ed, acquired it in 1970 and added offices in what formerly were unused attic and basement areas.

In recent years, the building has become a desirable location for Capitol-related businesses, including lobbyists, said Corum, who is a longtime commercial real estate broker and a past chairman of the Downtown Sacramento Partnership and the Sacramento Convention & Visitors Bureau.

Proximity to the Capitol was the big draw for the grocers group, said TRI Commercial broker Jared Dong, who represented the organization in the transaction.

“We were tasked with finding something in the radius of the Capitol and this was right in their sweet spot,” he said.

Driving the building purchase was a need for more space and a desire to stabilize rents, the grocers group said in a press release.

According to the release, the association has about three years remaining on its lease at the Esquire Plaza building, at 1215 K St., but will begin doing renovations at the new building in advance of its planned move there in 2018.

Among the improvements will be seismic and other structural upgrades and installation of an elevator, Dong said.

Broker John Frisch, who represented the seller along with Newmark, Cornish & Carey colleague David Brandenburger, said the building’s chief asset is its proximity to the Capitol two blocks away. But he said it also has drawn attention because of the surge in downtown business activity sparked by construction of the Golden 1 Center five blocks away.

“A rising tide lifts all boats,” he said.