First Interstate Center to change name to Wells Fargo Center
SEATTLE — September 9, 1999
Change is coming to a downtown Seattle landmark as the Wells Fargo stagecoach continues to roll.
The 48-story First Interstate Center at 999 Third Avenue in the heart of Seattle will change its name to Wells Fargo Center this month. The name change is the result of new terms in the long-term lease for Wells Fargo, which has its Washington headquarters in the center.
The financial services company occupies 100,000 square feet in the 945,000-square-foot office building, which is owned by Equity Office Properties Trust.
"We continuously look for meaningful ways to impact our customers' business," said Kim Koehn, Equity Office senior vice president for the west region. "Re-naming this building reflects our long-standing commitment to Wells Fargo. We expect this added value to contribute significantly to Wells Fargo's local branding efforts."
The name change is part of Wells Fargo's energetic and locally managed expansion in Washington to serve the fast growing business and consumer markets here.
"Putting our name on the building that houses the headquarters for all of our operations in Washington will help us further establish Wells Fargo's presence in this region," said Bob Byrne, Wells Fargo's president for Washington and a fourth-floor tenant. "We're proud to have our name associated with such a beautiful structure located in the middle of this great city."
Wells Fargo's Seattle main bank branch is located on the Third Avenue street level. Wells Fargo had changed all of the interior signage and ATMs there in November 1996. The new name change will match the center's exterior signage with the interior signage.
Wells Fargo has 186 employees working on six floors in the center. The company has a full-service brokerage center there, as well as offices for Commercial Banking, Institutional Trust, Foreign Exchange, Commercial Finance, Trust Services, Private Banking, Employee Benefits Trust, Retail Employment, Community Development, International Operations and The Trade Bank, among others. Additional tenants in Wells Fargo Center include Ernst & Young, US Ragen MacKenzie, Inc., Short Cressman & Burgess, P.L.L.C., and R.R. Donnelley Financial.
McKinley Architects designed the tower as a hexagon in order to maximize the spectacular views of Puget Sound and the Olympic Mountain range. The building first opened its doors in 1983 amidst a downtown Seattle building boom. Throughout the following nine years, 10 million additional square feet of office space were built downtown.
The center's first anchor tenants were First Interstate Bank and Burlington Northern. In December 1997, Wright Runstad & Company sold the center to Equity Office. One of the largest commercial real estate developers, managers and property owners in the Northwest, Wright Runstad & Company continues to manage and lease Wells Fargo Center.
Susan Murphy of Wright Runstad & Company represented ownership in the transaction. Jeff Rader and David Nelson represented Wells Fargo.
Equity Office owns almost five million square feet of office space in the Seattle area. Other Equity Office buildings in Seattle's central business district include Columbia Seafirst Center, 1111 Third Ave., Second & Seneca Building, Nordstrom Medical Tower and Second & Spring Building. Equity Office also owns several buildings in Bellevue, including City Center Bellevue, Rainier Plaza and One Bellevue Center.
Founded in 1852, Wells Fargo & Company is a $205-billion diversified financial services company providing banking, insurance, investments, mortgage and consumer finance through almost 6,000 stores and other distribution channels across North America, including all 50 states, and elsewhere internationally. Wells Fargo traces its roots in Washington back to 1857.
Equity Office Properties Trust (NYSE: EOP) is the nation's largest publicly held owner and manager of office properties, with a national portfolio of 285 buildings comprising 76.2 million square feet in 23 states and the District of Columbia. Equity Office has an ownership presence in 35 Metropolitan Statistical Areas (MSAs) and in 80 submarkets, enabling it to provide a wide range of office solutions for local, regional and national customers. For more information, visit the Equity Office Web site at http://www.equityoffice.com/ .