Mark Mueller


Mark Mueller covers commercial and residential real estate for the Orange County Business Journal. His beat also includes title insurers and mortgage lenders, as well as government stories that relate to real estate. He can be reached at

Phone: 949-833-8373 Extension: 226

Recent Stories

UCI Starts Work on Science & Engineering Building

EDUCATION: six-story structure to hold new hires

Work has started on a sizeable new science and engineering facility at the University of California-Irvine, designed to foster cross-disciplinary research in engineering, computing and physical sciences.

Urovant Inks New Licensing Deal as IPO Beckons

HEALTHCARE: $95M commitment; OAB focus

Urovant Sciences Ltd., an Irvine-based clinical-stage biopharma company focused on developing and commercializing drugs for urologic conditions, has inked a deal for a second product candidate.

Developers Buy Allergan Offices, Plan Rehab

REAL ESTATE: Panattoni, Stillwater pay $12 million

Panattoni Development Co., one of the country’s largest industrial developers, plans to move its headquarters from Newport Beach to Irvine, after investing in two buildings last owned by Allergan PLC.

Kelemen Goes Big With Atrium Buy

REAL ESTATE: $106M deal; creative-office perks planned

The Atrium building in Irvine, one of the most unique office properties in the area around John Wayne Airport, has a new owner—and plans for a major renovation.

Fairfield Residential Pays $70.5M for Orange Offices

Site Near MainPlace Mall To Get 727 Residences

A nearly 12-acre site close to Santa Ana’s MainPlace Mall that’s being eyed for a residential development has changed hands for an eye-opening price.

Lincoln, Angelo Gordon Pay $160M for Offices

REAL ESTATE: JWA portfolio has 8 buildings, totals 520,000 SF

An eight-building portfolio of office buildings in Newport Beach and Irvine has sold for about $160 million, the most expensive Orange County office transaction so far this year.

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Ricoh Sells Santa Ana Offices, Land to Developers

REAL ESTATE: 15 acres in Santa Ana; $43.5 million

Ricoh Electronics Inc., a Tustin-based maker of digital copiers, printed circuit boards, scanners, printers and other products that’s long been one of Orange County’s largest manufacturers, has sold one of its big area properties, a nearly 15-acre site it owned on Red Hill Avenue in Santa Ana.

Landsea Homes Moves HQ to Newport Center

Offices Near 23-Home Lido Villas Development

Landsea Homes has moved a little closer to the sea, and to one of its more upscale developments.

Startups & Innovations

Costa Mesa-based Opkix Inc. raised $5.7 million in a Series B round as it nears production on a premium, wearable smart camera.

Coworking Explodes in OC

Base Tops 1.2M SF, 67 Locations

Entrepreneurs, small businesses and startups have a million reasons to smile about Orange County’s rapidly growing base of coworking locations and their wide array of customer amenities.

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FivePoint Heads Up 57 Freeway for More Business

REAL ESTATE: Cal Poly Pomona picks developer for Lanterman

FivePoint Communities Inc. is in discussions to take over master development duties at a nearly 300-acre site on the eastern edge of Los Angeles County owned by California State Polytechnic University-Pomona.

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LBA Pays $104 Million for 2 Irvine Spectrum Offices

REAL ESTATE: Taco Bell headquarters part of buy

LBA Realty has added another big office property in the Irvine Spectrum to its portfolio, snapping up a two-building property that includes the headquarters of Taco Bell Corp.

Shared-Space Survivor

TechSpace Managed 2 Downturns—Will Others?

TechSpace Inc. was WeWork Inc. before WeWork was WeWork. The Aliso Viejo-based shared-space provider, whose roots date to 1997, can take claim as being one, if not the first, national firm to offer cutting-edge, amenity-heavy flexible work space to smaller companies.

Plans for Hotel-Office Hybrid in Irvine Move Forward

De Vries’ HJ Capital Group Heads Up Project

Expect to see the recently proposed Banc Hotel hospitality and office development in Irvine start to make its way through the city’s planning process next year, according to the ambitious project’s backers.

Shea Kicks Off Rare Industrial Project Near Airport

9-Building Development Will Be Nearly 500K SF

Shea Properties has kicked off work on the largest ground-up industrial project in the area around John Wayne Airport in over a decade.

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Edwards Grows HQ After $36M Land Buy Next Door

REAL ESTATE: 3 buildings, more parking planned for Royalty site

Edwards Lifesciences Corp. has proposed a major expansion of its Irvine headquarters, paving the way for Orange County’s largest public company to add hundreds of jobs to its local operations.

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Architecture Firm LPA Grows Space at UCI Biz Park

Broadcom’s Old Space Getting Snapped Up

Irvine-based LPA Inc., Orange County’s second-largest architecture firm, plans to spiff up its new headquarters at UCI Research Park.

Some Hotel Owners Grounded by Shorter Land Leases

Contracts Affect Ops Of Area Investors

Selling one of Newport Beach’s largest resort properties wasn’t an easy choice for Sunstone Hotel Investors Inc. Chief Executive John Arabia.

Dual Hotel-Office Project Proposed in Airport Area

REAL ESTATE: Backer of 9-story project has colorful history

A nine-story development featuring a boutique hotel and nearly 167,000 square feet of office space has been proposed for a vacant site on Jamboree Road in the John Wayne Airport area of Irvine, one of the largest commercial projects put forth there in recent years.

Monarch Beach Resort Loan Pegs Value at $466M

REAL ESTATE: $1.2 million per-room appraisal at high mark

The up-and-down valuation of the swanky Monarch Beach Resort in Dana Point over its 17-year history has apparently hit a new high, based on documents related to a new loan for the 400-room resort.

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Shea Homes Buys Seal Beach Luxe Home Site

$36.6M for 30-Unit Waterfront Project

An 11-acre waterfront site in Seal Beach whose fate has been in limbo for well over a decade has new ownership that plans a high-end housing project on part of the property.

Jazz’s Newport Noise Isn’t Music to Developer’s Ears

Noise-Related Litigation Puts Big Lease in Question

Jazz Semiconductor Inc.’s operations in its longtime industrial facility in Newport Beach already have an agreed-upon expiration date of March 2027.

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Din Tai Fung Expands

Popular Taiwanese restaurant chain Din Tai Fung is expanding its only Orange County location, at South Coast Plaza shopping center in Costa Mesa.

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Builder Circles Back Home With Tustin Development

REAL ESTATE: Lennar’s Levity follows CalAtlantic land buy

Scott Stowell, the former executive chairman of Irvine-based CalAtlantic Group Inc. and chief executive of its predecessor company, Standard Pacific Corp., had a firsthand view of two of the homebuilding industry’s largest mergers and acquisitions in recent memory.

Bascom, Realm Pay $24.3 Million for LA Tower Site

33-story Project Would Be 1st in Fashion District

Two Orange County firms are part of the development team working on plans for a high-rise residential tower in the Fashion District of Los Angeles.

TRI Pointe Tapped For Downtown Anaheim Project

Irvine-based TRI Pointe Group Inc. has made its largest reported Orange County land deal in several years for a 232-home infill housing site in downtown Anaheim.

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Lincoln Property Adds Newport Office to Portfolio

7-Story Quail Street Office Goes for $32.1M

Newport Beach’s 1500 Quail Street, a seven-story office about a mile from the entrance to John Wayne Airport, has a new owner.

Hyatt Regency NB Gets Los Angeles Ownership

REAL ESTATE: 408-room, bay-area resort has ground lease

In the biggest hotel deal in Orange County in over a year, a Los Angeles-based investor has bought the Hyatt Regency Newport Beach.

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County Moves Ahead with $338M Dana Harbor Redo

5-0 Vote Could Lead to Retail Work Next Year

The long-awaited redevelopment of Dana Point Harbor could start as soon as next year, after the county signed off on a mixed-use project featuring three area developers.

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First 238 Homes at Corona’s Bedford Have OC Flavor

New Home Goes With TRI Pointe, Woodside

Orange County-based homebuilders make up two of three firms tapped to build the first batch of homes at Bedford, the first major residential development in Corona in more than 15 years.

Maui-Bound: Top OC Developers Invest in West

Recent Hotel, Retail Investments Near $1B

Fly about 2,500 miles west from John Wayne Airport to Maui, then drive half an hour to the resort area of Wailea, and you could be forgiven for thinking you’re still in Orange County when you notice the number of real estate investors and developers taking up shop.

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Chipotle’s Landing Spot: 2 Newport Center Floors

RESTAURANTS: Site prepped for 125 staffers at start

Chipotle Mexican Grill Inc. is poised to become Newport Beach’s most valuable public company immediately following its move here from Denver this year.

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SJC Exec Center Sold for $31.5M to Ensign Group

Senior Housing Operator Plans HQ Move in 2019

Ensign Group Inc. (Nasdaq: ENSG) has doubled up on office space next to the Santa Ana (5) Freeway at a property relatively near its Mission Viejo headquarters.

Anaheim Homebuilders Supplier Will List Stock

FINANCE: IPO on shelf; private shareholders to sell

Anaheim-based Select Interior Concepts Inc., installer and distributor of interior building products used in the residential and commercial real estate sectors, could soon see more than $350 million of its common stock traded for the first time on a public exchange.

5-Building Beckman Coulter Campus Sold

REAL ESTATE: Brea site goes to Hines & Oaktree

The local office of Houston-based real estate developer and investor Hines has added another sizeable property in North Orange County to its portfolio with the 34-acre office campus in Brea, which houses Beckman Coulter Inc.’s local operations.

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Sares Regis Preps First Torrance Site Project

REAL ESTATE: Old Toyota HQ getting industrial start

Sares Regis Group is starting to take the wraps off its plans to redevelop Toyota Motor Sales U.S.A. Inc.’s former North American headquarters in Torrance.

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Luckey Landing: Tech Firm Plans Big HQ Move

Palmer Luckey’s new defense technology startup, Anduril Industries Inc., is preparing to take up a much more prominent position in Orange County, and appears poised for a major hiring push.

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Robinson Pharma Signs on for New Costa Mesa Site

To Lease 100,000-SF Harbor Gateway Building

An industrial building planned for the Harbor Gateway business park in Costa Mesa appears to already be spoken for.

AvalonBay Partners With Hines for Big Brea Project

653 Rentals Planned At Brea Place Campus

AvalonBay Communities Inc. plans to build its next area apartment development on the site of one of Brea’s largest office complexes.

Moshayedi Embarks On New Real Estate Ride

REAL ESTATE: Entrepreneur, Gallagher searching for buys

Mark Moshayedi, one of Orange County’s best-known tech entrepreneurs, coastal property owners, and classic-car collectors, has a new commercial real estate venture.

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Diversification, Stability Equal Success

Homebuilder Has Lending, Tech, Commercial Arms

­To get an idea of the business acumen of Far West Industries and the Lissoy family, take a look at the Santa Ana-based homebuilder, developer and investor’s local operations during the Great Recession.

Singapore Investor Pays $42.5M for Irvine Center

1st Real Estate Buy in US For Newport Beach Unit

Three-building retail property Jamboree Promenade near John Wayne Airport in Irvine changed hands.

ARES Adds Platinum Triangle Rentals for $100M+

REAL ESTATE: Anaheim portfolio now tops 1,500 units

Irvine-based apartments investor Advanced Real Estate Services Inc. has made its largest local acquisition in several years, picking up a rental complex near Angel Stadium in the Platinum Triangle area of Anaheim.

Long Beach’s Real Estate Reach Long

REAL ESTATE: Douglas Park hotspot for developers from OC

Orange County’s main hub of business might be the area around John Wayne Airport, but for several members of OC’s real estate development community, LGB has been the preferred destination over the past few years, not SNA.

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Lyon Lead for Next Great Park Homes Leg

REAL ESTATE: $166M land buy for homes starting at $350K

William Lyon Homes (NYSE: WLH) has been tapped to build one of the most unique home developments in Orange County in several years, a 536-unit project at Great Park Neighborhoods in Irvine with a large number of affordably priced homes.

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Retail Center Near South Coast Plaza Sells for $46.5M

JH Real Estate Partners Swaps Rentals for Retail

Newport Beach-based JH Real Estate Partners Inc. recently added a big local property to its growing retail portfolio, a shopping center across the street from South Coast Plaza.

Premier Business Centers Tops in Co-Working in OC

REAL ESTATE: Bascom unit has 15 OC sites, 277K SF

Premier Business Centers doesn’t have the Wall Street buzz WeWork Inc. does or brand-new locations in some of Orange County’s recently built or redesigned office developments like some other co-working peers, such as Spaces.

Santa Ana’s MainPlace Eyed for Big Makeover

REAL ESTATE: Apartments, offices, hotels proposed for site

The owners of MainPlace Mall in Santa Ana, Orange County’s ninth-largest shopping center by sales, have proposed an extensive overhaul of the roughly 50-acre property.

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CEO Unfazed By ‘No’ Vets Cemetery Vote

REAL ESTATE: Revised land plans one more tweak to site

FivePoint Communities Inc. Chief Executive Emile Haddad continues to strike a positive tone on the future of Great Park Neighborhoods in Irvine, despite an election loss that will result in another change in plans for part of the former El Toro Marine base.

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Construction Firms Report Solid Gains; 10-Year High

$9.1B in Commercial Work By Local Offices

Orange County’s largest commercial construction companies defied some worrisome regional trends to post their best revenue year in a decade.