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Charleston’s Laidley Tower placed in receivership

Charleston Daily Mail photo by Tom Hindman A federal judge placed Laidley Tower into receivership last week after owners defaulted on a $25 million loan on the property. The receiver will manage the property and its finances while a court deals with a civil lawsuit tied to the loan default. Tenants were notified of the change in management Thursday.
Charleston Daily Mail photo by Tom Hindman
A federal judge placed Laidley Tower into receivership last week after owners defaulted on a $25 million loan on the property. The receiver will manage the property and its finances while a court deals with a civil lawsuit tied to the loan default. Tenants were notified of the change in management Thursday.

CHARLESTON, W.Va. — A federal judge has placed downtown Charleston office building Laidley Tower into receivership after the property’s owners defaulted on a $25 million loan.

Tenants were notified Thursday that Colliers International, a Charlotte, N.C.-based property management firm, is the new management and leasing firm for the 18-story, 225-foot-tall office tower, located at 500 Lee St. East.

On April 1, U.S. District Judge Thomas Johnston appointed David Peterson of Colliers International as the receiver for the property after Wells Fargo Bank filed a civil suit in federal court claiming Laidley Tower’s owners defaulted on their loan for the property. A receiver is someone who manages a property or company that is under financial dispute or bankruptcy.

According to court documents, in April 2007, Tomorrow 32 Laidley Tower L.P., a Delaware-based company that bought the tower, borrowed $25 million from Citigroup Global Markets Realty Corp. for the property. Wells Fargo Bank became the trustee on that loan. Documents show that after the loan was made, Laidley Tower’s ownership structure was changed to include 23 additional “tenants in common,” who are just additional owners, not tenants in the building.

Wells Fargo said owners failed to make their required loan payment in January, and as a result the bank requested the entire loan be paid in full. As of Feb. 6, the loan’s remaining principal balance was $24,185,308.27, according to court documents.

Laidley Tower, like Charleston’s other Class-A rated office towers, has seen a significant loss of tenants in recent years.

Nearly one-third of the building — 30.2 percent — was vacant last November…

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