For Some Reason, No One Wants To Buy An Office Building Shaped Like A Giant Picnic Basket

Image courtesy of Adam Schweigert

For sale: one seven-story office building in the Midwest, less than 20 years old and in great shape inside. Price: $5 million. There are just two tiny problems that are keeping anyone from buying the building: it’s too far from the nearest city, and it’s shaped like a giant picnic basket.

We do not mean “it is kind of shaped like a picnic basket.” The building, built for the home-goods company Longaberger, was specifically designed to look like a giant Longaberger picnic basket. Even the sign looks like a little metal plate affixed to a basket, not the kind of sign that a company would affix to the building that it spent $32 million constructing.

The building’s problem is that it’s 40 miles outside of Columbus, OH, and that it is shaped like a giant picnic basket. If only one of those things were the case, someone might have already bought it. Even the real estate agent who listed the building admitted to Bloomberg that if it were closer to the city of Columbus, someone would have bought it by now.

Instead, the basket building has languished. Its current listing price puts the cost at about $28 per square foot when similar office space in the area normally sells for two to three times that.

It’s a good candidate for reuse, since there aren’t many companies seeking 180,000 square feet of basket-shaped office space. The area doesn’t have much tourist traffic, so a basket museum is probably out of the question.

It could be renovated to look less like a basket — the new owner could take the handles off, at least, since they serve no functional purpose — but the combination of the location and size of the building mean there aren’t many people interested to begin with.

Selling a $5 Million, Seven-Story Basket Is No Picnic [Bloomberg]

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