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story.lead_photo.caption FILE — The Doctor's Building is seen behind the former Sears store in this 2016 file photo.

Two medical office buildings in the Midtown area of Little Rock have sold for more than $34 million.

The Midtown Medical Park and the Doctor's Building near West Markham Street and South University Avenue sold for $34.4 million to separate investors.

Both were part of a 2016 deal totaling $44 million in which a Dallas real estate development firm acquired the two buildings as well as the building that once housed a Sears department store. The Sears building has since been razed to make way for the District at Midtown, a restaurant and hotel development.

Welltower OM Group LLC, part of a publicly traded health care real estate firm that's based in Toledo, Ohio, paid $17.9 million for the Midtown Medical Park, a 69,734-square-foot medical office complex built in 2015 at 6119 Midtown Ave., according to online records at the Pulaski County assessor's office.

Natural Capital, an Arkansas-based investment firm that said it focuses on private-market investments, announced Monday that it had acquired the Doctor's Building, its first investment since the firm formed in August.

"We are thrilled that our first transaction will bring immediate value to a landmark building in a thriving part of our capital city," said Brad Henry of Little Rock, the managing partner for Natural Capital and the former vice president of the Arkansas Development Finance Authority.

The $16.5 million deal will be followed by what Natural Capital said in a news release were "immediate plans to invest significantly in property renovations," which the firm said will "complement ongoing development in the Midtown area."

"Ongoing development" refers to the District at Midtown project, where crews are installing infrastructure necessary to support the restaurants and hotel that are planned on the former Sears site, said Marshall Saviers of Rogers, a partner in Natural Capital who's also president of and principal in Cushman & Wakefield/Sage Partners.

Saviers' firm brokered the Doctor's Building transaction, will oversee its renovations and will manage both it and the Midtown Medical Park.

The current tenants of the Doctor's Building will remain in the building, which is situated in a medical and retail corridor that developers say boasts the densest daytime population within the state, thanks to four hospitals, more than 1 million square feet of retail and 500,000 square feet of medical office space, all within 2 miles.

"As a tenant of more than 50 years, the Doctor's Building is our home, and its location is essential to the Little Rock medical community," said Chad Rodgers, a physician at the Little Rock Pediatric Clinic.

The Natural Capital team also includes Todd Simmons, vice chairman and chief executive officer of Simmons Foods Inc., based in Siloam Springs; and Brock Gearhart, president and chief executive officer of Greenwood Gearhart, an investment advisory firm based in Fayetteville.

The deals are the second and third involving Midtown medical buildings. Last month, 5 Little Rock Properties-Blandford LLC, an affiliate of Catalyst Healthcare Real Estate in Pensacola, Fla., paid a total of about $7.4 million in 14 separate transactions to acquire a controlling interest in the Blandford medical building on the CHI St. Vincent Infirmary campus.

Business on 10/15/2019

CORRECTION: Todd Simmons is vice chairman and chief executive officer of Simmons Foods Inc. An earlier version of this story listed an incorrect first name.

Print Headline: In two deals, $34.4M paid for medical buildings in Little Rock

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