Eric Stern counsels real estate investors, owners and end-users in the acquisition, financing, restructuring, and disposition of office and industrial buildings, retail centers, hotels, development parcels, residential subdivisions, student housing projects, and other mixed-use properties. Real estate investment trusts (REITs), institutional lenders, national and regional retailers, and other corporate end-users are among his clients. Eric represents the nation’s largest developer, owner, and manager of high-quality student housing in transactions throughout the United States. In 2014 and 2020, Eric was recognized in a total of four transactions listed among Philadelphia Business Journal’s Deals of the Year. Eric led or co-led the firm’s real estate practice from 2004 to 2021.
Eric handles deals through the United States, with a particular presence in the Northeast and Mid-Atlantic states.
A frequent speaker and writer, Eric lectures on real estate issues to regional and national organizations, including the American Bar Association (ABA), the International Council of Shopping Centers, CLE International, Law Seminars International, the Philadelphia Bar Association, and the Pennsylvania Bar Institute. Eric has also been a frequent lecturer at The University of Pennsylvania Law School. He writes on commercial leasing and subleasing topics, including exclusivity of use, operating covenants, structuring sublease relationships, and obtaining landlord consents.
Eric is a member of the American College of Real Estate Lawyers (ACREL) and has held regional and national positions with real estate organizations. Eric was recently named “Lawyer of the Year” for Philadelphia Real Estate Law by The Best Lawyers in America (2016) and has been recognized by Chambers USA: America’s Leading Lawyers for Business and Best Lawyers since 2003. In 2014, The Philadelphia Business Journal honored Eric as one Philadelphia’s most influential real estate lawyers.
Gwynedd Mercy University, a private Roman Catholic university in Montgomery County, Pennsylvania, in the sale of an approximately 15-acre parcel of land with buildings to Saint Charles Borromeo Seminary in the Archdiocese of Philadelphia for development of the Seminary’s new campus.
Independence Blue Cross in the $360M acquisition and financing of 1901 Market Street, the 800,000 square foot, 45-story office tower located in Center City Philadelphia, and IBC’s headquarters since 1987.
Drexel University in the adaptive use redevelopment of a Pennsylvania state armory property on Drexel’s campus into the Arlen J. Specter National Squash Center.
American Campus Communities (NYSE:ACC) in long-term ground lease transactions on college and university campuses in multiple states for the development of student residence and mixed use projects.
American Campus Communities (NYSE: ACC) in the negotiation and execution of two 75-year ground leases, and design construction and management contracts, for a multi-phase student housing project at the Walt Disney World Resort®, in Orlando, Florida, capable of accommodating almost 10,500 student interns.
Hamilton Lane (NASDAQ: HLNE) in the leasing of its new 130,000 sf headquarters office at Seven Tower Bridge, a new $112 million, 260,000-square-foot office building to be constructed near the banks of the Schuylkill River in Conshohocken, Pennsylvania, a key suburban office market west of Philadelphia.
Iovance Biotherapeutics (NASDAQ: IOVA) in the negotiation of a lease agreement to build an approximately 136,000 square foot commercial-scale facility to support US production of tumor infiltrating Lymphocyte cell therapy products in Philadelphia at the Navy Yard, a dynamic urban development.
Incyte Corporation (NASDAQ: INCY) in the negotiation of its new 190,000 square foot headquarters lease in New Castle County, Delaware involving the repurposing of an architecturally significant structure that now houses research and development, laboratory, offices, and 500+ employees.
Brandywine Realty Trust (NYSE: BDN) in its acquisition of a five acre parcel in the University City submarket of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, including the 862,629 sf historic 30th Street Main Post Office Building, a new long term lease to the General Services Administration, and the ground leasing of three adjacent sites for office, hotel, residential, and structured garage development in the project known as Cira South.
A pension plan in the sale of land and negotiation of a 99-year ground lease of the Hall of States building in Washington, D.C., which generated cash proceeds of approximately $160 million for our client.
Drexel University in completing a long-term ground lease development deal with a publicly-traded student housing REIT for the development of a new 1,300 bed, 580,000 square foot student housing facility with a new dining hall and retail components on the university's urban campus. Mr. Stern simultaneously represented the university in its acquisition of long-term control of a second 452,000 square-foot student housing facility located nearby.
A publicly-traded provider of real estate and relocation services in its lease of a new, 270,000 square-foot, LEED Silver Certified corporate headquarters facility in New Jersey.
A global private equity fund in a series of transactions relating to a 53-story, 1 million square foot trophy office building in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.
A publicly-traded REIT in sale-leaseback and financing of 388 properties in 19 states aggregating approximately 14.9 million square feet in two portfolio transactions for an aggregate purchase price of $1.05 billion.
A publicly-traded REIT in acquisition of Boston, Massachusetts trophy office tower 1,050,000 square-foot office tower and parking garage for $705 million.
Boston College Law School, 1981, J.D., With Honors
Brandeis University, 1978, B.A., With Honors
Supreme Court of the United States
US District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania
Awards and Affiliations
Recognized for 3 transactions listed among Philadelphia Business Journal's 2020 Deals of the Year
Fellow, American College of Real Estate Lawyers (2000–present)
Ranked, Real Estate, Philadelphia & Surrounds, Chambers USA (2022)
Ranked, Real Estate, Pennsylvania, Chambers USA (2003–2021)
Ranked, Chambers Global: The World's Leading Lawyers (2010)
Recommended, Real Estate, The Legal 500 US (2015–2021)
Recommended, Real Estate; Real Estate Investment Trusts (REITs), The Legal 500 US (2019)
Recognized, Real Estate Law, Philadelphia, The Best Lawyers in America (2006–2022)
Lawyer of the Year, Real Estate Law, Philadelphia, The Best Lawyers in America (2016)
AV Preeminent Peer-Review Rated by Martindale-Hubbell (2009–2022)
Recognized, Pennsylvania Super Lawyers (2004–2022)
Recognized, "Heavy Hitters of Real Estate," Philadelphia Business Journal (2014)
Recognized, Who’s Who Legal: Real Estate (2013–2021)
Member, Board of Directors, Central Philadelphia Development Corporation (2016-present)
Member, Editorial Advisory Board – Real Estate, Law360 (2012, 2014)
Member, Higher Education Real Estate Lawyers (HEREL) (2014–present)
Member, Advisory Board, Samuel Zell and Robert Lurie Real Estate Center, The Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania (2000–2016)
Member, National Association of Real Estate Investment Trusts (NAREIT)