Chattanooga, Tenn. — BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee has sold one of its downtown office buildings in preparation for the move to its new corporate campus on Cameron Hill. Berry & Hunt, a local real estate firm, along with Sixth Street Limited Partnership, bought the Hub building and nearby surface lots and parking structures.

“The sale of the Hub Building demonstrates the strength of real estate value in downtown Chattanooga, despite the world-wide financial crisis,” said Dan Jacobson, vice-president of properties and corporate services for BlueCross. “We have received a lot of interest in all of our downtown buildings and we are very pleased to complete this sale.” The parking garage located near the Hub building is not a part of the sale.

“The Hub Building has played a significant role in Chattanooga history and we are excited to be involved in the future opportunities for development of this and the other properties,” said Jim Berry, partner in Berry & Hunt.

As part of the sale agreement, BlueCross will lease back the properties through July 2009 to accommodate BlueCross’s move to Cameron Hill. Berry & Hunt represented itself and Sixth Street Limited Partnership in the acquisition. The brokerage firm of Jones Lang LaSalle (JLL) of Atlanta conducted the transaction on behalf of BlueCross. NAI Charter Real Estate Corp. was the local representative for JLL on the transaction.

Prior to its construction, the Hub property was the site for the Western Auto Supply Co., a chain originally from Kansas City, Mo. The first of six eventual Chattanooga stores, it opened on March 8, 1929, and sold items ranging from radiators to bicycles. The property was then used by Miller’s department store as its home furnishings department for a number of years before becoming the Hub Furniture Co. BlueCross bought the building in 1982 for $500,000 from Richard Fowler, owner of the Hub store, following its closing after four years of business.

About BlueCross

BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee's mission is to provide its customers and communities with peace of mind through affordable solutions for health and healing, life and living. Founded in 1945, the Chattanooga-based company is focused on reinventing the health plan for its 3 million members in Tennessee and across the country. Through its integrated health management approach, BlueCross provides patient-centric products and services that drive health improvement and positively impact health care quality and value. BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee Inc. is an independent licensee of the BlueCross BlueShield Association. For more information, visit the company's website at www.bcbst.com.