Oakland, Calif., Waterfront to Get Big Retail Market

170,000-s.f. building to be located at Oakland's Jack London Square

"They venture through the tunnel to Walnut Creek or into San Francisco, and we think we have an excellent opportunity to create a new urban infill project that will give people an option of staying in town - including coming to a major waterfront world-class public market."

Jim Ellis' father, Hal Ellis, was a co-founder of one of the nation's largest diversified real estate firms, Grubb & Ellis Co. He served as its chairman and chief executive until 1992. His projects have included Oakland's City Center at 14th and Broadway and Emery Tech on Hollis Street in Emeryville.

Other projects include office buildings in San Francisco, Hacienda Plaza in Pleasanton and Town & Country Village in Palo Alto.

Falaschi, the co-developer, was a partner in a family-owned company that built multiple locations for Safeway Stores, Prudential Life Insurance and Pacific Telephone, among other clients, throughout Northern California.

A national pension fund, the National Electrical Benefit Fund, is participating in the financing, with Ellis Partners, Falaschi and a CarVal Investors' managed account.

The National Electrical Benefit Fund was created by the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers and the National Electrical Contractors Association. The developers secured debt financing from Bank of America to round out the project financing.