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MetLife No Longer Involved in San Francisco’s Transbay Project

Aug. 16 (Bloomberg) -- MetLife Inc., the U.S. insurer with a $60 billion real estate portfolio, is no longer a partner in the Transbay Tower development in San Francisco, which would be the city’s tallest office building should it be constructed.

“MetLife is not involved in the project,” Christopher Breslin, a spokesman for the New York-based company, wrote today in an e-mail. MetLife was still a partner as of mid-June, according to San Francisco Business Times.

The 1,101-foot (336-meter) building in San Francisco’s South of Market area is being developed by Hines, which won a 2007 competition to design and construct the tower with MetLife as its financial partner. The Houston-based developer and MetLife negotiated a term sheet to buy land at First and Mission streets, Hines said in 2008.

Paul Paradis, a Hines senior managing director, and Adam Alberti, spokesman for the Transbay Joint Powers Authority, both declined to comment on financing for the tower. The authority ran the competition and is a counter-party to the tower plan.

Hines agreed to pay the Transbay Joint Powers Authority about $180 million for the land, Alberti said in the interview yesterday. The payment will be applied to a new regional bus and rail station, under construction next to the tower site, he said. The transit center’s estimated total cost is $1.5 billion, paid for in part by federal and local transportation funds, bridge tolls and fees, Alberti said.

To contact the reporter on this story: Dan Levy in San Francisco at dlevy13@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Kara Wetzel at kwetzel@bloomberg.net

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