Canyon-Johnson Urban Funds Purchase Bank-Owned Mixed-Use Project in Oakland, California

    LOS ANGELES–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Building on its expanding portfolio of investments in urban communities across the country, the Canyon-Johnson Urban Funds (CJUF) have acquired Thomas Berkley Square, a recently completed bank-owned property with 88 residential units and ground floor retail in Oakland?s Uptown District. CJUF intends to market and sell the residential units as condominiums and lease and sell the property?s ground floor retail space.

    ?It is a quality housing product in a diverse, densely populated urban area, and continues the revitalization that has been so important to this part of Oakland.?

    Thomas Berkley Square originally housed the business and law offices of its namesake, a pioneering African American publisher, attorney, civic leader and civil rights advocate in the Oakland community. The Strategic Urban Development Alliance (SUDA) planned a two phase redevelopment of the property and constructed the adjacent 110,000 square-foot office building. SUDA ultimately sold the development rights for the residential component to a developer who encountered significant delays and cost overruns associated with the bankruptcy of its general contractor. CJUF purchased the residential building from the construction lender at a significant discount to replacement cost.

    The property, which will be rebranded as ?Uptown Place,? is located in the heart of the Uptown District, the entertainment and restaurant community in downtown Oakland launched by former Mayor, and current Governor-elect Jerry Brown. The property, which is located at 630 Thomas L. Berkley Way, is situated one block from the newly renovated Fox Theater, two blocks from the Paramount Theater, immediately across the street from the 665-unit Uptown Apartments development, and within blocks of the 19th Street BART station.

    ?Thomas Berkley Square is precisely the kind of urban investment Canyon Johnson makes,? said CJUF Managing Partner Bobby Turner. ?It is a quality housing product in a diverse, densely populated urban area, and continues the revitalization that has been so important to this part of Oakland.?

    ?Uptown Place will deliver reasonably-priced, transit-oriented homeownership in a thriving Oakland neighborhood that we believe is positioned for further growth,? said Canyon Vice President Marti Page.

    ?Canyon-Johnson is all about creating opportunities in urban America,? said CJUF Partner Earvin ?Magic? Johnson. ?It?s great to invest in Oakland, and to help a project as important as Thomas Berkley Square get to the next level,? he added.

    Thomas Berkley Square?s collection of 88 condominiums consists of flats and townhomes with one, two and three bedrooms, at an average unit size of 961 square feet. Unit interiors feature quality finishes including GE Profile dishwashers, microwaves and stoves as well as granite countertops. Building amenities include a common courtyard with seating and BBQ areas, a gym, and dedicated residential parking. Further information on the property is available at

    About Canyon-Johnson Urban Funds

    The Canyon-Johnson Urban Funds (CJUF) are one of the country?s largest private real estate funds focused on the development of urban properties in underserved neighborhoods. A joint venture between Canyon Capital Realty Advisors and an entity of Earvin ?Magic? Johnson?s Magic Johnson Enterprises, the funds were formed to identify, enhance and capture value through the development and redevelopment of real estate in densely populated, ethnically diverse urban communities. Fundamental to Canyon-Johnson?s investment thesis is its commitment to a ?triple bottom line? philosophy of achieving superior financial results, fostering opportunities within urban communities, and embracing environmental responsibility. With nearly $2 billion in committed equity capital, the funds are positioned to facilitate more than $8 billion in development and revitalization in major U.S. metropolitan areas. For more information, visit


    Contacts :
    Canyon-Johnson Urban Funds
    ?Steve Sugerman