Real estate investment firm Loja Real Estate LLC of Walnut Creek has purchased The Shops at Pacific Station in downtown Encinitas for $19.5 million, the company announced July 27.

The Shops is the retail component of the mixed-use Pacific Station development on South Coast Highway 101, completed earlier this year by John DeWald and Associates. The 38,828-square-foot shopping center is anchored by Whole Foods Market and is currently 96 percent leased, Loja noted in a statement.

“Once development returns to the market, we anticipate a trend toward mixed-use projects in dense built-out suburban communities where land is scarce and planners want development aggregated around transit hubs,” said Tom Engberg, Loja Real Estate’s chief executive officer.

Pacific Station is located next to the Encinitas train station, which is on a rail line extending from San Diego into Los Angeles County.

The transaction closed on July 25. Loja was represented by Colliers International, and the seller, Pacific Station Property LLC, was represented by Holliday Fenoglio Fowler LP.

Loja’s parent firm, Loja Group LLC, has retained Capital Growth Properties Inc. of La Jolla to manage the retail property, the statement said.

Loja Group LLC is a women-owned real estate investment management firm with $135 million in assets under management, and Loja Real Estate LLC is a wholly owned subsidiary that acquires grocery-anchored retail assets throughout the U.S.

— Lou Hirsh