Massachusetts Pension Reserves Investment Management Board (Mass PRIM) has acquired $179m (€134m) in US real estate and expects to invest a further $175m before the end of the year.

The pension fund has closed three transactions, including the first deal made by its industrial joint venture with AEW.

The 279,016sqft Hollins Ferry industrial property in Baltimore, Maryland was acquired for $32.2m.

Mass PRIM will own 95% of all assets acquired through the £100m joint venture, with the balance going to individual development partners used. It is aiming to outperform the core industrial market by 150-200bps.

Tim Schlitzer, senior investment officer for real estate and timberland at Mass PRIM, said: “This is the first transaction that we have completed as part of our industrial development program with AEW.

“We will be redeveloping the existing asset into a new one. I think that the demand for new industrial space in the Baltimore-Washington, DC corridor is very strong.”

The pension fund also bought the 231-unit Asa Flats apartment complex in Portland, Oregon for $106m through Invesco Real Estate.

The third deal was the purchase of the 903,000sqft Hunter Road industrial property in Atlanta, Georgia by LaSalle Investment Management.

Mass PRIM has another $175m of transactions that are expected to be closed by its separate account managers in the third and fourth quarters.

The pension fund has also reappointed The Townsend Group as its real estate consultant for a three-year contract.

It has hired six new companies for real estate consulting services: Bard Consulting, Callan Associates, Harvest Capital Partners, Meketa Investment Group, Robert Charles Lesser & Co, and Real Estate Fiduciary Services. They will be giving advice on strategic initiatives, new partnerships and transaction related activity.

“I think that these firms will be able to assist our investment staff at looking at variety of investment options for real estate,” said Schlitzer. “The firms will be used based on the expertise they have on a particular item.”