The 52,000-square-foot @Highland office building has landed a second tenant, with a third likely on the way.
Northwestern Mutual has leased 12,681 square feet on the first and second floors of the Class A building, located at the corner of Bluebonnet Boulevard and Highland Road. The financial services company will join anchor tenant General Informatics at the @Highland campus, which opened in early 2018.
General Informatics CEO Mo Vij—who developed @Highland—says the building also has a third and final tenant lined up, though he declines to disclose the name until the deal is finalized.
“We have a (letter of intent) from a national company that would take up the remaining space,” Vij says.
Northwestern Mutual is moving to @Highland because the company has outgrown its current location at 11440 Lake Sherwood Ave. N as it continues to expand its services in the Capital Region.
“We are incredibly excited for our clients and firm as we continue to expand our presence in greater Baton Rouge,” says managing director Benjamin Wheeler. “Moving to @Highland is the next chapter in our journey towards maximizing Northwestern Mutual’s impact in the community.”
Bill Sanders of Beau Box and Ross Berthelot of Prime Realty Group represented Northwestern Mutual in the deal, while Ty Gose of NAI Latter & Blum represented @Highland.
“This is significant for the Baton Rouge office market because you’re seeing a strong company take more space, in a time when many companies are downsizing,” Sanders says. “@Highland checked a lot of boxes for Northwestern Mutual, as we were able to create a more efficient work space while also allowing room for future growth.”
The sleek glass-and-steel office building, which cost some $20 million to develop, broke ground in 2016. General Informatics, an IT services firm, moved its headquarters to @Highland last year. Northwestern’s space is expected to be completed by early 2020.
Future plans for the entire nine-acre @Highland development include three additional low-rise buildings to be built for office, retail, restaurant and residential space. But Gose has said construction on other buildings likely won’t begin until the first building is fully leased.
The city-parish in 2016 agreed to provide @Highland a $500,000 performance-based incentive to be paid in five annual installments, in order to secure the project, according to a press release from the governor’s office announcing the development.