[caption id="attachment_36623" align="alignright" width="360" caption="The 127,000-square-foot office building at 4040 Civic Center Dr. fit the real estate investment trust’s growing Northern California and Pacific Northwest growth plan."][/caption]

SAN RAFAEL -- The purchase of a mostly full 127,000-square-foot San Rafael office building was part of a a Los Angeles-based real estate investment trust's plan to grow quickly in key Northern California and Pacific Northwest job markets.

"We want to be in supply-constrained markets where there is access to a vibrant technology employment base with good local talent," said Mike Sanford, Kilroy Realty Corp. vice president for Northern California and the Northwest. "That's why we are in the South of Market area and in southern Marin County and eventually other places in Silicon Valley where there are key demographics."

Kilroy purchased 4040 Civic Center Drive, a top-class office building that houses design software giant Autodesk and others, on June 9. It was one of five property purchases Kilroy made since the beginning of this year, totaling 1.2 million square feet of office space in Kirkland and Bellevue in Washington state, San Diego and San Rafael purchased for a total of $413 million.

The REIT reportedly is in contract to buy 400,000 more square feet in a couple of San Francisco properties at an anticipated sale price of $150 million.

The sale of 4040 Civic Center was the first major class A office building sale in Marin County since Barker Pacific Group and Rockwood Capital purchased the 143,000-square-foot Rowland Plaza complex in Novato in October 2009 at a purchase price of $120 a square foot, according to Cornish & Carey Commercial Newmark Knight Frank's Haden Ongaro, who brokered the the 4040 Civic Center sale with Mac Cranford and Mark Carrington.

The purchase price of 4040 Civic Center wasn't disclosed. However, local market experts expect it was well above the sale price for Rowland Plaza, given that 4040 Civic Center is 93 percent occupied by Autodesk, executive suites provider Regus and other tenants.

Kilroy plans capital improvements to the San Rafael property, including renovations and work needed to obtain LEED certification for the building, according to Mr. Sanford.