Hyattsville's UTC Foreclosed On, Portions Now Owned By Wells Fargo
The properties auctioned off include a vacant lot, Qdoba, Five Guys Burgers and Fries, a residential building, The Carolina Kitchen Bar & Grill and another residential building. The price was $25.1 million.
The bank foreclosed the properties and opened a round of bidding for ownership, which it won.
“We initiated the bidding and we were the successful bidder,” said Shelley Beason, a Wells Fargo communications specialist.
The auction was conducted by Alex Cooper auctions and real estate services. Paul Cooper, a partner in Alex Cooper, said that the bank’s winning bid totaled $25.1 million.
Beason said that the next step is for the Prince George’s County District Court to issue a final ruling on ownership. This is to take place 60 days following the foreclosure and will in all likelihood confirm Wells Fargo as the owner, although this is technically not guaranteed.
“It’s in the court’s hands right now,” she said.
M. Scott DeCain, a principal with Bald Eagle Partners, who represents UTC, confirmed the foreclosure, but declined to comment further.
The properties auctioned off include six addresses dispersed along America Boulevard: 6400 (a vacant lot), 6450 (Qdoba), 6451 (Five Guys Burgers and Fries), 6500 (a residential building), 6501 (The Carolina Kitchen Bar & Grill), and 6506 (another residential building).
The rest of the center remains under its original ownership. Wells Fargo only acquired the six properties, according to Beason.
“As you know, University Town Center is a very large complex, and we’re one of many lenders in it,” she said.
Stuart Eisenberg, Executive Director of the Hyattsville Community Development Corporation, said not to expect major changes in life at the center. The stores will remain the same, and buildings’ tenants will continue to rent under their existing conditions.
Eisenberg added, however, that Wells Fargo could impose new terms and conditions for tenants later if it wishes to do so.
“There may be some situations where a tenant who was having trouble with the rent has to renegotiate or leave, if the Wells Fargo group takes a stronger position,” he said.
It’s also possible that UTC management might re-acquire the properties some time in the future. It would depend on a number of factors, such as the center’s level of commercial success in the next few years and whether new management takes over.
“The viability of the offices at those locations is different from offices at other locations,” Eisenberg said. “A lot has to do with the overall branding and management. That is all potentially changeable.
“And at some point, if the management of the facility changes, that could change the tenor of the whole discussion.”