People on the Move: Kameron Djamal


Kameron Djamal

Investment Associate at Franklin Street

Kameron Djamal specializes in the negotiating and closing of multifamily properties across South Florida.


Demand for These Multifamily Assets Incredibly High

How high is the demand for class B and class C multifamily assets in Florida? Franklin Street’s Tampa-based investment sales team arranged $103.8 million in multifamily sales in the first quarter of 2017. Darron Kattan, Kevin Kelleher, Zachary Ames and Robert Goldfinger brokered the multifamily deals.

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Rubio, still seeking Tampa Bay home, has staff hold office hours at libraries

It’s been two months since a landlord notified Sen. Marco Rubio that the lease on his Tampa office would not be renewed because of weekly demonstrations staged there.

The search has been hindered, in part, by a tight rental market and Rubio’s newfound reputation as a lightning rod for activists galvanized in opposition to the agenda of President Donald Trump.

Meantime, Rubio’s two-person local staff is improvising, meeting with constituents at coffee shops and libraries.

David Higgins, a member of progressive activist group Indivisible Fl-13, met with a Rubio staff assistant Tuesday at the main St. Petersburg Library branch to deliver a letter urging Rubio to investigate Trump’s ties to Russia. During the meeting, Higgins asked about the office search.

The staffer, Shauna Johnson, said the biggest obstacle arises when would-be landlords find out why Rubio’s staff had to leave its former office, according to Higgins.

“I said, ‘Just to clarify, what’s the issue?'” Higgins said. “She said, ‘Protests.’ “

Finding a site that meets security standards was also cited as a factor.

Christina Mandreucci, a Rubio spokeswoman, said only that the staff is still searching for a new location in Tampa and in Jacksonville, where the landlord also declined to renew the lease because of frequent demonstrations.

Mandreucci declined to answer specific questions about the search.

“Our staff in the Tampa region continues to meet with constituents in places ranging from coffee shops for one-on-one meetings, to reserved conference rooms in local libraries for larger meetings,” Mandreucci said in an email statement. “Depending on our constituents’ needs, our staff is always accommodating and willing to meet in a location most convenient for them.”


The owner of Bridgeport Center, a gleaming, nine-story office center at 5201 Kennedy Blvd., notified Rubio’s office Feb. 1 that the lease would not be renewed and that Rubio had 30 days to leave. The reason: Weekly demonstrations by activists seeking to pressure Rubio on a variety of issues had become too disruptive to other tenants and too costly for the company, Jude Williams, president of America’s Capital Partners, told the Tampa Bay Times last month.

The demonstrators gathered on the public sidewalk just outside the front entrance to the building, chanting and evoking honks from passing motorists. Other tenants complained, Williams said. News coverage of the decision put local landlords and property management companies on notice.

That’s understandable, said Chris Butler, managing director for Tampa-based commercial real estate firm Franklin Street. Butler specializes in office space leasing throughout the Tampa Bay area.

“When you have a multi-tenant office building, the landlord and the property management company have an obligation to all tenants,” Butler said. “They all pay rent. Everyone needs to get along and when you have a situation like that, it has to be addressed in the best interests of all tenants.”

Another challenge for Rubio’s staff is what Butler called a “landlord’s market” for office space in Tampa Bay. Leasing fees are at a high water mark and vacancy rates are low, Butler said, so landlords can afford to be picky.

That said, Butler figures there are plenty of landlords who would love to have Rubio as a tenant.

“You just have to find the right fit, because based on what has happened, there is obviously some risk of disruption and interruption to the other tenants,” he said.

Because of the potential friction with private landlords and their other tenants, many members of Congress opt for space in public buildings, said former U.S. Rep. David Jolly, a Republican who represented a portion of Pinellas County from 2014 to January of this year, when he lost the seat to Democrat Charlie Crist.

U.S. Senator Bill Nelson, for example, has an office in the Sam Gibbons Federal Court House in downtown Tampa.

Jolly had three offices, one at St. Petersburg College, a state institution. It’s easier to handle demonstrations in public buildings because of existing security, said Jolly, who recalls demonstrations at the SPC office during his tenure.

“We had a sheriff’s deputy assigned to our office who could be on site to make sure the protestors could exercise their constitutional rights but at the same time the office could maintain its daily function and accept visitors,” Jolly said.

Public buildings also tend to be more easily accessible for constituents who want to walk in for help, he said.

Among his three offices, at least 10 constituents who walked in without an appointment each day had substantive concerns that required opening an inquiry with a federal agency such as the Veterans or Social Security administrations or requiring other kinds of direct assistance, Jolly said.

“The people who seek to visit an office are disproportionately either elderly or of limited means,” Jolly said. “They don’t have Internet or email or choose not to use it, or are simply accustomed to filling out paperwork in person.”

For them, Jolly said, “not having an office would be a real challenge.”

Once Rubio finds an office, he’ll have to submit the location for a legal review that can take weeks, Jolly said. Once the office is approved, it takes more time for Senate information technology staff to travel to the site to set up a secure computer network.


A message on the web page for Rubio’s Tampa office tells visitors the staff is in the process of relocating and directs constituents who need assistance to call a number listed.

Members of Indivisible Fl-13 arranged their Tuesday meeting with Johnson, the Rubio staffer, by email, Higgins said. After some discussion about where to meet, Johnson suggested the main library branch at 3745 9th Ave N.

After everyone arrived, the members waited with Johnson at a counter for staff to direct them to a meeting room. The library staff wasn’t sure which room to put them in, then led them to an auditorium, Higgins said. A worker let them into the darkened space and said it would be take a few minutes to set up some tables. To make the most of the 20 minutes Johnson had allotted for the meeting, the group decided to forgo the tables and set up a circle of folding chairs.

The six members handed over a letter urging Rubio, who sits on the Senate’s Foreign Relations and Intelligence committees, to support an independent investigation of the Trump administration’s ties to Russia. The group made sure to reiterate their desire for Rubio to hold a town hall meeting. He so far has refused to do so.

Higgins said the members were grateful for a respectful and productive meeting.

“We were really happy with the meeting, even if the circumstances were kind of awkward,” he said.

Meanwhile, the demonstrations in Tampa go on.

Activists who had flocked to the sidewalk in front of Rubio’s office have been gathering at the intersection of Dale Mabry Highway and Kennedy, said Michael Broache, co-founder of Indivisible Tampa.

“It’s a location where we can visibly demonstrate our concerns,” Broache said. “We haven’t had any problems or concerns.”

Contact Tony Marrero at or (813) 226-3374. Follow @tmarrerotimes.


2017 BizWomen Mentoring Monday

Meet your mentor: These Jacksonville area women will offer advice at Mentoring Monday 

The Jacksonville Business Journal, along with 39 other markets that are part of parent company American City Business Journals, will host its annual event April 3. Women in the business community will conduct one-on-one coaching sessions of seven minutes. 

Franklin Street’s Whitney Kantor will serve as one of the volunteer mentors.

Whitney specializes in retail landlord representation across Jacksonville and throughout North Florida. With more than 20 years in commercial real estate, she has in-depth knowledge of retail trends across the Southeast assisting with a portfolio of more than 3 million square feet representing national REITs, regional, and local clients. Whitney was named a 2016 Woman of Influence by the Jacksonville Business Journal and was awarded the gold Investor CARE Award from the National Association of Real Estate Investment Trusts (NAREIT) for excellence in communication and effective reporting with investors. She is a member of the International Council of Shopping Centers (ICSC) and has served the organization in several capacities including the ICSC Foundation board as a marketing committee Sub-Chair, Community Support Award Judge, and as a member of the Mary Lou Fiala Fellowship applicant selection committee. She is currently active with Urban Land Institute (ULI) North Florida and serves on their marketing committee.


First Watch jobs to total 150, seeking 3 more sites

First Watch, The Daytime Café, is on track to employ at least 150 people in the area with its existing and new restaurants.

Spokeswoman Eleni Kouvatsos said Tuesday the restaurants will hire 25 employees at each outlet. Three locations are open; three more are planned.

The former Corner Bakery space in Brooklyn Station on Riverside is the latest site that Kouvatsos said will open in the fall.

She said the interior of the 4,000-square-foot building, at 192 Riverside Ave., will be completely renovated.

“The Riverside neighborhood continues to grow, and we feel that there is a great need for a quality restaurant that serves breakfast all day,” she said.

Kouvatsos said the tenant mix is ideal for First Watch. “It was very competitive to secure this high-profile location, but the landlord agreed that we were the best fit for this space,” she said.

Brooklyn Station is anchored by The Fresh Market and includes other restaurants and retailers. Jacksonville-based Regency Centers Corp. is the landlord.

The Sarasota-based breakfast-brunch-lunch restaurant opened in August 2011 in the South Beach Regional Shopping Center in Jacksonville Beach; in September 2011 in the Riverplace Shopping Center in Mandarin; and in July 2012 at Hodges Pointe Plaza.

The next three should open by year-end.

Kouvatsos said the First Watch restaurants at Village Commons along Southside Boulevard should open by June and at the Shoppes at Bartram Park along Old St. Augustine Road by year-end.

“We are actively pursuing more locations within the Jacksonville area, although we don’t currently have any additional locations to announce,” she said.

Carrie Smith, managing director for the Franklin Street real estate company, is First Watch’s exclusive tenant representative in North Florida.

Smith said First Watch needs 3,200 to 4,000 square feet of space.

She said the market could accommodate a First Watch in North Jacksonville, such as the River City Marketplace area; West Jacksonville; and St. Augustine.

“It’s never easy to find locations these days because it is a highly competitive market,” she said.

She pointed out that First Watch is a table-service restaurant instead of fast-casual, which offers counter service and table delivery, which differentiates it.

“We will continue to aggressively do deals,” Smith said.


Top Commercial Real Estate Firms and Brokers in Atlanta Win CoStar Power Broker Awards

Several top firms and real estate brokers in Atlanta are among the winners of the annual CoStar Power Broker Awards. Now in its 16th year, the awards recognize those who perform at the highest levels in commercial real estate brokerage. 

Every year, CoStar’s research team verifies and records the commercial real estate sales and lease transactions that closed during the previous year. From that information, CoStar presents CoStar Power Broker Awards to a select number of brokerage firms and individual brokers who closed the highest overall transaction volumes in commercial property sales and leases within their respective markets. 

The following top commercial real estate firms in the Atlanta market have been awarded CoStar Power Broker Awards for their exceptional deal-making accomplishments in 2016:

Top Leasing Firms

Franklin Street Financial Partners

The winners range from national powerhouse firms to small boutiques, and recognize the outstanding deal-making achievements in 2016 by the top brokers and firms in over 90 markets across the U.S. and Canada. 

“Every year we are honored to recognize those individual brokers and firms who have outperformed their peers,” said CoStar Group founder and CEO Andrew C. Florance. “These industry leaders have demonstrated exceptional sales and leasing success, and we congratulate them on their achievement.” 

All CoStar Power Broker Awards are based on transaction data in CoStar’s commercial real estate database, which is the largest, independently researched database of commercial real estate property information available online. With 30 years of industry experience, CoStar’s database contains almost 5 million commercial properties, and the total square footage of gross building area tracked and maintained by CoStar exceeds 115 billion square feet.


All American RE Group Buys Pair of Jacksonville Communities

Aventura, FL-based All American RE Group acquired two apartment communities in Jacksonville, FL for $3.6 million. 

The portfolio consists of the 60-unit Virginian Arms community at 2501 Jammes Rd and the adjacent 56-unit Arbor Oaks community at 3535 Jammes Rd. 

James Reed and Matthew Kesterson of Franklin Street Real Estate Services represented the buyer and seller. 

Please see CoStar Comp #3835045 for more information on this transaction.


The List: Top Commercial Real Estate Brokers in Tampa Bay- 2016

Ranked by total volume generated out of Tampa Bay in 2016


Company Name: Franklin Street

Location Phone: 600 N. West Shore Blvd. #600, Tampa, FL 33609 813-839-7300

Total volume 2016: $461 million     

Sales volume 2016: $374.53 million

Lease volume 2016: $86.46 million

Local licensed brokers:

Local offices: 1

Year founded: 2006

Top Local Executive(s): Andrew Wright, CEO/Managing Partner,


What CRE Investors Are Concerned About Most Right Now

With a new administration in the White House, interest rates rising, regulations potentially changing, and talk of recession, there is a lot for commercial real estate investors to consider this year.  But what are they concerned about most right now? caught up with Jim Reed, director of Franklin Street in Jacksonville, to get his thoughts on that and other pressing questions in part two of this exclusive interview. You can still read part one: Why You May Want to Invest a Little Further North.

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Franklin Street’s multifamily brokerage team arranged $103.8M in FL apartment sales during Q1 2017

Franklin Street’s multifamily brokerage team arranged $103.8 million in apartment sales in Florida during the first quarter of 2017. Darron Kattan, Kevin Kelleher, Zachary Ames and Robert Goldfinger of Franklin Street Real Estate Services in Tampa brokered the transactions.

“Florida’s surge in apartment sales activity is being driven by fast job growth, solid economic fundamentals and high rental demand,” said Kattan, Managing Director at Franklin Street.  “We have a flood of capital chasing a finite number of deals and that has created a very competitive market.”

“The demand from multifamily investors has not slowed down even with the recent interest rate hike,” said Kelleher, Senior Director at Franklin Street.  “The market for B and C Class apartment properties in particular is hotter now than it has been for a decade. We are seeing interest from a variety of different buyers that include institutional players all the way to mom-and-pop operators.”

Multifamily transactions arranged by the Franklin Street team in the first quarter of 2017 included:

•  Tuscany Bay – Franklin Street represented an institutional seller and a private, family office oriented buyer, in the transaction of a 396-unit apartment community at 5870 Sundown Circle in Orlando, FL, for $36.65 million.  Buyer plans a significant renovation to bring the property up to the next level.

•  Oak Bend – Franklin Street represented the buyer and seller, both private clients, in the sale of a 112-unit rental community at 1550 University Woods Place in Tampa, FL, for $6.7 million.  The buyer is a Canadian-based client looking to diversify and expand holdings in Florida.

•  Bridgewater Pointe – Franklin Street represented the buyer and seller, both private clients, in the sale a 100-unit, garden-style apartment property at 151 Eber Boulevard in Melbourne, FL, for $8 million. Franklin Street’s Lonnie Kitchen provided insurance services and the buyer selected Franklin Street Management to manage the asset.

•  River View – Franklin Street represented both the buyer and seller, in the sale of a 296-unit apartment property at 5659 Del Prado Drive in Tampa for $23.4 million.  The buyer is a New York-based real estate company that has recently bought a significant amount of properties in Florida. 

•  Liv at Dunedin – Franklin Street represented the buyer and seller, both private clients, in the sale of a 178-unit rental community at 1763 Main Street in Dunedin, FL, for $22.45 million.  The property sold for a record price for the vintage as it had just come out of a major renovation where rents were moved 40%+ in a two-year period.

•  Montierra – Franklin Street represented the buyer and seller, both private clients, in the sale of a 96-unit apartment community at 14401 N 22nd Street in Tampa for $6.6 million.  The buyer was completing a 1031 exchange out of New York City.

Darron Kattan, Kevin Kelleher, Zachary Ames and Robert Goldfinger have over 60 years of combined experience with multifamily real estate in the Tampa Bay Region. The team has represented more than 6,000 multifamily units valued at nearly $400 million since 2015.