The historic Columbia Bank Building in downtown Tacoma has been purchased for $4.8 million by Bellevue developer F. Kemper Freeman, Jr.

The 88,000-square-foot former department store at 1102 Broadway Plaza was a personal investment, though, according to Kemper Development vice president of leasing and development Howard McQuaid.

Partnering with Tacoma Broadway LLC, Kemper purchased the building because he saw potential in downtown Tacoma, McQuaid added. That potential was specifically sparked by State Farm Insurance Company's recent choice of the former Russell Investments headquarters to add hundreds of jobs to the neighborhood.

Other Kemper Development projects include the Bellevue Square shopping center and the connected Lincoln Square and Bellevue Place mixed-use developments. The developer has recently announced a $1.2 billion project to add more hotel rooms, offices and retail spaces to its core developments in Bellevue.