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One Northgate Park along Hixson Pike
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Two Northgate Park office building is just southeast of the other Northgate office building

A pair of longtime Hixson office buildings are changing hands as the new owners seek to take advantage of the area's growth.

Northgate Park One and Two, which combined make up just under 100,000 square feet of office space near Northgate Mall, were sold late last month to Northgate Park Properties for about $5 million.

Chattanoogan Ray McDowell, a principal in the buyer's group that includes Forrest W. and Melissa G. McNair, of Kingsport, Tenn., said the four-story structures are about 80 percent full.

"We believe it's the best office space in the Hixson area," McDowell said about the buildings located just off Hixson Pike.

He said the buyers are looking for professionals to lease the remaining space in the buildings, such as medical, financial and legal office users. Also, it could hold corporate training offices, McDowell said.

McNair, a former Chattanoogan planning to move back to the area, said the buildings have a concentration on medical, legal, accounting and investment services, which make up over 95 percent of the existing tenants.

The structures could hold businesses which need as little as 400- to 500-square-feet of space to as much as 4,000 square feet, the buyers said.

"We like the current tenants," McDowell said.

McNair said there are almost 40 in the structures currently.

The buyers will need to do little to ready the buildings except to build out space for new office users, they said.

"It has been kept in immaculate condition by the prior owner," McDowell said. The seller was Opyt LLC and Opyt 01 LLC.

McDowell said the buildings went up in the 1970s and had a connection with Northgate Mall owner CBL & Associates Properties Inc. A development company whose principals are now associated with Chattanooga-based CBL originally built the mall in 1972.

The mall recently underwent one of its biggest makeovers, a multimillion-dollar renovation that included a remake of an adjacent shopping center. CBL, one of the biggest mall and shopping center companies in the country and the owner of Hamilton Place, bought Northgate from General Growth Properties in an online auction in 2011.

Also in Hixson, organic grocer Earth Fare recently unveiled plans to open its second store in Chattanooga this fall with a location off Hixson Pike in the former Harvest Grocery.

Meanwhile, on Highway 153, work has started on what will be Hixson's biggest-ever commercial and housing development. Hillocks Farm, valued at well more than $100 million when built out, is slated to hold apartments as well as commercial and retail space.

Integra Land Co. of Lake Mary, Fla., is developing 280 garden-style apartments slated to open next year on 20 acres on the north part of the 190-acre parcel.

Duane Horton, a Chattanooga builder overseeing the Hillocks Farm project, said he's continuing to work on both retail and office components of the plan.

Contact Mike Pare at mpare@timesfreepress.com or 423-757-6318.

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