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.
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.
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.