Bart I. Mellits

Tel 215.864.8701
Fax 215.864.9895

Bart I. Mellits is Chair of Ballard Spahr's Real Estate Department and oversees more than 120 attorneys in all of the firm's offices. Bart is also a member of the firm's Elected Board. With more than 30 years of experience, Bart represents developers, owners, and institutions in a wide range of real estate projects and transactions. His experience encompasses development, joint ventures, sales, acquisitions, leasing, and loan transactions, as well as real estate workouts. He also counsels a variety of Fortune 500 companies and nonprofit clients on real estate issues affecting their businesses.

Bart has led legal efforts on real estate-related projects for public and private universities, national lending institutions and national retailers, in addition to national, regional, and local developers. He has worked on a broad range of projects, including research parks, hospitals and medical office buildings, shopping centers and malls, corporate headquarters, industrial and warehouse facilities, multifamily residential properties, and hotels.

Bart has represented landlords and tenants nationwide in build-to-suit leases, as well as leases for large-scale retail, office, industrial, warehouse, hotel, research, development and laboratory, and mixed-use properties, as well as bondable and other types of financing leases. He has structured a variety of portfolio sales, acquisitions, and financings with REITs, private equity firms, and other institutions.

Representative Transactions

  • Led a team of attorneys in the sale of a national portfolio of warehouse and retail assets to a leading global REIT for more than $800 million by a New Jersey-based real estate company.
  • Represented a national developer in its collaboration with a major university for the redevelopment of a 14-acre downtown site. The mixed-use project will include research, lab, and educational facilities, as well as tech office space, high- and low- rise residential, retail, and recreational areas.
  • Represented a national developer in its collaboration with a major Florida university for development of a multi-building life science park, to include up to 1.8 million square feet of lab space, offices, retail shops, and restaurants, by preparation and negotiation of a development agreement, ground lease, and other key deal documents.
  • Led a team of attorneys that guided the developer of a 13-story mixed-use project comprising an outpatient clinic and rehabilitation center for a major university hospital system, as well as medical office and research space and street-level retail and parking. Structured, prepared, and negotiated the development agreements with nonprofit and government stakeholders, as well as the key ground lease, and unique condominium structure.
  • Represented a national management company in negotiating a master lease and management agreement with the City of Philadelphia for the expansive retail program at Philadelphia International Airport, with more than 100 in-line stores, restaurants, services, and specialty retail units.
  • Represented developers of a ground-up nine-story hotel development adjacent to the Pennsylvania Convention Center in Philadelphia, with 248 extended-stay and other suites, including advising on the business organizational structure and negotiating key deal documents, such as the ownership joint venture agreement with a private equity firm investor, the hotel management agreement, the franchise agreement, and the development agreement among various project partners and the Philadelphia Redevelopment Authority.
  • Led a team of attorneys that represented a large international pharmaceutical company in relocating more than 300 employees to a new global headquarters facility, including due diligence for the new site, tax structuring, a long-term build-to-suit lease agreement, and reciprocal easement and restriction agreements.
  • Represented industrial developer in acquisition, development, financing, construction and leasing of industrial big box center on complex brownfield site.
  • Represented national retailers in scores of build-to-suit, pad and in-line leases nationwide, including multibranded, multistory stores.
  • Represented developer of multifamily, mixed-use project that straddles both sides of a downtown city street, including reviewing, preparing, and negotiating the contribution agreement, condominium documents, joint venture agreements, parking agreements, and financing documents.

Professional Activities

New Jersey Bar Association

New York Bar Association

Pennsylvania Bar Association

Philadelphia Bar Association, Business Law Section and Real Property Section

Recognition & Accomplishments

Chambers USA, real estate law (Pennsylvania), 2009-2020

The Best Lawyers in America, real estate law, 2009-2020

The Legal 500 US, real estate and construction - real estate, 2013-2014, 2016-2020

George Washington University Law School (J.D. 1984)
Associate Editor, George Washington Journal of International Law and Economics

Georgetown University (B.A., cum laude, 1981)

New Jersey

New York