Online auction fails to sell historic Caples Building in Downtown El Paso

Written by Desmond

March 31, 2022

The historic Caples Building in Downtown El Paso is still for sale.

The long-vacant, seven-story building was not sold in a three-day online auction, which ended Thursday.

The highest bid on the 112-year-old building was $2.175 million — $25,000 below the minimum selling price of $2.2 million set by the Los Angeles owner, said Sergio Tinajero, a Realtor for KW Commercial in El Paso and listing agent for the property.

The required, minimum starting bid was $700,000.

The plan now is to contact the 20 people who registered for the auction, including four people who actually placed bids, and “see if we can negotiate something,” Tinajero said.

The online auction was conducted by Ten-X Commercial, a California real estate company. It began March 1 and ended late Thursday morning, Tinajero said. It originally had been scheduled for Feb. 28-March 2.

More: El Paso home prices among lowest in United States even as prices continue rising

Names of the bidders aren’t being disclosed, Tinajero said. One of those who registered, but did not bid, was El Paso billionaire Paul Foster, he said. Foster owns several Downtown buildings, including two historic ones that he had renovated.

The Caples Building owner prefers that an El Paso investor purchase the building, and one of the registered bidders is an El Paso investor who made a previous offer on the building, Tinajero said. He declined to identify that person, but said it’s not Foster.

The building is owned by Sy Dardashty, a Los Angeles businessman. He bought it for $1.1 million in businessman William “Billy” Abraham’s federal court bankruptcy auction in late 2018. Several of Abraham’s historic and dilapidated Downtown buildings were sold in that auction.

The building is located at 300 E. San Antonio Ave., on a block with several other empty buildings, including the former J.C. Penney store.

“It’s an historical building, but it requires a lot of remodeling,” Tinajero said.

“It takes a special type of investor to know how to get the historical tax credits” and other incentives available for renovating it, he said.

Vic Kolenc may be reached at 546-6421; vkolenc@elpasotimes.com@vickolenc on Twitter.

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