Marsh Supermarkets is reoccupying a portion of its long-vacant headquarters building and has snagged a plum tenant to sublease most of the rest of the space—a feat that should boost the fortunes of the Interstate 69 corridor.
First Advantage, a St. Petersburg, Fla.-based firm that offers a wide range of employee-recruitment services, will become the largest tenant in the building that sits just north and west of the I-69/96th Street interchange. The 148,000-square foot building at 9800 Crosspoint Blvd., one of the largest and most visible in the I-69 corridor, has been largely vacant since Marsh moved most of its headquarters staff out in 2008.
“It’s the face of Crosspoint office park and to have its parking lot vacant is a shame,” said Tom Hadley, a broker for Summit Realty who represented First Advantage in site selection and lease negotiations. “With First Advantage there and Marsh bringing people back it’s great for the corridor and great for the building.”
First Advantage has agreed to lease the entire third floor and a portion of the fourth floor—or about 44,000 square feet. It will move 340 employees from two other Indianapolis locations by Oct. 1. Its lease is for almost eight years and includes options to extend.
The move allows First Advantage to capture the efficiencies that come with consolidating its Indianapolis operations and gives the company room to expand, said Valerie Osinski, senior vice president and executive general manager. She said the new offices will give the company the capacity to add 30 or 40 employees.
Osinski said her company had been looking for a new, north-side location for about a year. She said the Marsh building was attractive to First Advantage for several reasons, including the ability to have exterior signage facing I-69, and the building’s auditorium and gym. Another draw was an on-site cafeteria that has been mothballed since the building emptied out but will be pressed back into service.
First Advantage is leaving 30,000 square feet at 9025 River Road, a Duke Realty building, and 12,000-square-feet at 7999 Knue Road in the Castleton Office Park. Hadley said because the spaces being vacated are relatively small they should be easy to backfill.
Marsh, which has maintained a skeleton crew of about 60 people in the building, is going to occupy about 40,000 square feet on the lower level and first and second levels after bringing 130 to 135 people back to the building later this year. About 50 people are coming from office space in Yorktown, where Marsh was founded, and another 80 to 85 are coming from the grocer’s offices on South Franklin Road.
After Marsh and First Advantage move in, there will be about 18,000 square feet on the fourth floor still available for lease, said Mary Beth Kohart, the Cassidy Turley broker who represented Marsh in the First Advantage lease negotiations.
Marsh at one time occupied the entire building. It owned the building, which it had built in 1991, until Florida-based Sun Capital Partners bought Marsh in 2006 and implemented cost-cutting that included a sale-leaseback of the building, which is now owned by a private partnership.
After Marsh moved out, Roche Diagnostics agreed to sublease the entire building from Marsh in an 18-year deal worth more than $47 million, but Roche abruptly pulled out of the deal before occupying the building.
Marsh took Roche to court to try and enforce the lease and is still seeking compensation from Roche for expenses incurred before the deal went awry. A trial that had been scheduled for March has been postponed until September.