SunTrust transitioning by vacating big swath of Innsbrook-area office space

SunTrust will vacate its 250,000-square-foot suburban campus at 11011 and 11013 W. Broad St. (BizSense file)

The marriage of two banking giants continues to make waves in the Richmond commercial real estate market.

SunTrust, as part of its ongoing transition into combining with BB&T as Truist Bank, is planning to move out of a large swath of office space in Richmond’s West End.

The bank confirmed last week it will vacate its 250,000-square-foot suburban campus at 11011 and 11013 W. Broad St. near Innsbrook where it is the anchor tenant in the sprawling two-building complex.

It will empty out of all 214,000 square feet at the 11011 W. Broad building, where it is the only tenant, and is looking to sublease the space.

It also is looking to unload 40,000 in the neighboring building, a 205,000-square-foot property it shares with other tenants.

A Truist spokesperson said last week the move is part of continued post-merger consolidation between SunTrust and BB&T.

“As part of our post-merger efficiency efforts, we’re in the process of consolidating our corporate real estate (non-branch) locations across the country, including here in Richmond,” the company said in an email.

SunTrust has enlisted Thalhimer to try to sublease its space in the former Westmark Office Park. (Michael Schwartz photos)

It said the employees of the Henrico campus will be moved to two downtown buildings that bear SunTrust’s name.

“Over the coming months, we’ll be moving teammates from our heritage buildings into two of our current spaces — SunTrust Center at 919 E. Main St. and SunTrust Riverview Center at 1001 Semmes Ave. We’re aiming to complete these moves by the first half of 2022,” the email said.

The spokesperson did not respond to additional questions as to how many employees will be making the move from Henrico to downtown. It also didn’t say whether there are any planned consolidations out of BB&T’s longtime space in Riverfront Plaza, which sits just up the street from SunTrust’s 919 E. Main St. tower.

It added that the office consolidation was driven, in part, by the pandemic.

“It’s also an opportunity to transition our workspaces to more flexible office environments that provide teammates more opportunities to collaborate while also allowing for proper social distancing and our COVID-19 safety protocols,” the company said.

The bank’s two-building 32-acre Henrico compound was previously known as WestMark Office Park before taking on the name SunTrust Center One and Two in 2017, when the bank signed a 10-year, five-month lease.

The properties are owned by Washington, D.C.-based FD | Stonewater. It purchased the buildings for a combined $62.4 million in 2018.

SunTrust’s sublease of the West Broad Street spaces is being handled by Thalhimer’s Paul Silver, Brian Berkey and Karla Knight.

The office complex took the SunTrust Center name when the bank signed a long-term lease four years ago.

BB&T and SunTrust closed their $66 billion mega-merger in December 2019, creating the sixth largest bank in the U.S. with more than $440 billion in total assets and 3,100 branches, mostly in the Southeast.

Earlier this year the ensuing real estate consolidation rippled through the combined banks’ Richmond-area branch networks when they closed 10 of their 71 local branches as part of a move to shutter dozens of retail locations in Virginia.

The banks also continue to have sizable non-branch operations in Richmond.

SunTrust’s Semmes Avenue complex in Manchester is the home of the headquarters of its mortgage arm, though some of that division’s leadership was shipped off to Greensboro.

Richmond is also home to investment management firm BB&T Scott & Stringfellow, as well as investment banking arm BB&T Capital Markets.

SunTrust’s investment banking division, SunTrust Robinson Humphrey, also has had a presence in Richmond.

The Truist spokesperson said last week that Richmond continues to be a hub market for its mortgage, banking and wealth management businesses.

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Bruce Milam
Bruce Milam
3 months ago

This is excellent news for downtown Richmond, especially Manchester, and more confirmation that the City is a strong draw for regional business growth. Those who predicted that the BLM marches of last summer rang the death knell for the City couldn’t have been more misled. The City continues its steady climb!

Ed Christina
Ed Christina
3 months ago
Reply to  Bruce Milam

“BLM marches of last summer rang the death knell for the City’

Anyone who thought that watches way to much Fox news.

Michael Dodson
Michael Dodson
3 months ago
Reply to  Bruce Milam

Good news for now. But most mid-level and higher staff I know at the mortgage division do anticipate a lot of that staff moving to Greensboro or permanently teleworking. And is the article mentioned we still haven’t seen what will happen with the BB&T downtown office space and it’s workers PS Anticipate more branch closings too. A local branch manager I work with told me that those non-combined dual branches you see now are the only ones on the new retail bank system for Truist. If your local branch does not say BB&T/SunTrust on its sign today it probably won’t… Read more »

Fred Squire
Fred Squire
3 months ago
Reply to  Bruce Milam

Bruce, I think you are not really comparing apples to apples. I am more than certain those that said the riots would sway business away from the city were primarily talking about where Richmond residents chose to live, raise families and spend post-tax dollars on food and entertainment. I’m fairly certain none were claiming the plight of the city would in some way sway 2 major banks (who just merged) from consolidating their offices to downtown. There may be a high chance that the truist person making the decision has never even seen Monument ave or been to Virginia, it’s… Read more »

Doug Johnson
Doug Johnson
3 months ago
Reply to  Fred Squire

I doubt any of the people screaming they won’t come to Richmond anymore because of the riots had any intentions of living in the City of Richmond…for reasons that have nothing to do with the riots. As far as not coming to Richmond to dine at their favorite restaurant, those restaurants will relocate to the burbs and everything will be alright.

Fred Luck
Fred Luck
3 months ago
Reply to  Doug Johnson

Pepper spraying peaceful protestors. Riots happened in Tulsa in 1921. Tuesday was the 100 year anniversary of this. This was a real riot. Y’all need some serious help.

Fred Luck
Fred Luck
3 months ago
Reply to  Fred Squire

Riots? They were peaceful protest with some opportunists who do not care about the movement that were doing the looting. This world is screwed. Stay off mainstream media and actually talk to to someone who is involved in the BLM movement.

Michael Dodson
Michael Dodson
3 months ago
Reply to  Fred Squire

So true considering they own good old “Ft Crestar” site on Semmes and leased those old Signet Bank buildings!

karl hott
karl hott
3 months ago

Good news for Innsbrook too (in the long run). The departure of workforce will hopefully expedite the plans to reinvent Innsbrook as a mixed use destination.