Daily News for Commercial Real Estate & Business – April 19, 2010

Here are the news stories you might find interesting today regarding commercial real estate and business:

Tower Automotive leases 460,000 square feet in Goodyear The Phoenix economic development community, which has thrown its collective energy behind solar technology, just scored a major victory in Goodyear. Tower Automotive of Livonia, Mich., has signed a lease for 460,000 square feet at the former Rubbermaid manufacturing facility at 17300 W. Broadway Road in Goodyear, near Loop 303 and County Road 85. View article...

NEW JERSEY FIRM NOTICED FOR TRUSTEE's SALE ON 414 APARTMENT UNITS IN PHOENIX Phoenix - The 414-unit Empirian on Central apartments at 4140 N. Central Avenue in Phoenix has been noticed for trustee's sale. The property serves as collateral on a $39.5 million loan owed to the registered holders of GMAC Commercial Mortgage Securities Inc. Mortgage Pass Through Certificates. The loan was issued to Empirian On Central LLC and Bush Realty On Central LLC, both companies formed by Empire Equities in Montvale, N.J. (Abe Miller, pres.) View article...

ALLRED VENTURE BUYS 13 ACRES SOUTH OF SKY HARBOR AIRPORT . . . TO BUILD PARKING FACILITY Phoenix - University Parking Venture LLC, a company formed by Douglas Allred Co. in San Diego, Calif. (Douglas Allred, David Allred principals), paid $5.16 million to purchase a 13.2-acre parcel of vacant land located at the southwest corner of the Hohokam Expressway (State Route 143) and University Drive in Phoenix. The seller was AG/Mainstreet Compass Center LLC, a venture formed by Angelo, Gordon & Co. of New York City, N.Y. and Mainstreet Capital Partners in Phoenix (David Warren, principal). View article...

Tenants, receivers benefit from retail-center foreclosures In metro Phoenix's underoccupied, financially stressed shopping centers, the remaining tenants face yet another challenge. Besides their own financial woes linked to the worst recession in decades, they often have to cope with their landlord's problems. Rising vacancies and declining values have prompted many landlords to postpone improvements, cut back on maintenance and scrap marketing plans aimed at drawing traffic to the developments. View article...

Buckeye to get its first Fresh & Easy Buckeye residents are getting a new shopping center with the town's first Fresh & Easy Neighborhood Market, a CVS Pharmacy and a Chase Bank branch. The shopping strip, called the Shoppes at Miller Park, is planned for the southwest corner of Miller Road and Southern Avenue. View article...

Measure increases referral rewards to tenants Desperate to fill empty apartments, Arizona landlords want to be able to pay more money to tenants who provide referrals that pan out. A measure approved by the House and Senate and awaiting gubernatorial action would permit referral fees of up to $200. That is twice as much as now permitted by law. View article...

Independent eateries faring better in down economy While many restaurants are bemoaning the lack of customers, closing their doors and putting off plans for expansion, others are seeing lines out the door and opening new locations. An average of 2.5 percent of restaurants in Arizona close in a given year, said Steve Chucri, president and CEO of the Arizona Restaurant Association, but that number has doubled to 5 percent lately. View article...

Ahwatukee's Mudpie Boutique closes after 16 years Since 1994, Mudpie Boutique rode the waves of Valley housing boom, selling whimsical home décor items to people moving into new places or redecorating old ones. As home buying declined in the last couple of years, owners Suzie and Mike D'Amato found creative ways to keep customers coming to their Ahwatukee Foothills store. View article...

Scottsdale school to get world's largest solar-powered AC unit The world's largest solar-powered air-conditioning unit will be installed at a school in Scottsdale this fall, district officials say. The 500-ton solar chiller, one of only a handful of solar-powered AC units in the world, is planned for the Mountainside Middle School-Desert Mountain High School complex, said David Peterson, assistant superintendent for business services for the Scottsdale Unified School District. View article...

Bell Ford goes green with $10M expansion The economy has been hard for car dealers, but Bell Ford's business is picking up and managers expect the turnaround to continue. The northeast Valley dealership, on 21 acres at Bell Road and Interstate 17, recently completed a $10 million, 35,000-square-foot expansion. Among the changes is a 75-kilowatt solar system featuring more than 500 photovoltaic panels on the roof of the expanded service center. View article...

Arizona private sector adds 7,300 jobs in March The state's private sector added 7,300 jobs in March, including 6,200 in the Phoenix area, according to the Arizona Department of Commerce. The job gains came in tourism, administrative support, professional services and health care. The state lost 2,400 government jobs during March. View article...

Arizona posts third-worst percentage loss in construction jobs There are some glimmers of hope that Arizona's bleak employment picture is improving overall, but not in the construction sector. Arizona posted the third-worst percentage of job losses among the states for construction jobs, losing 19.9 percent of those jobs between March 2009 and March 2010, the Associated General Contractors reported Friday. View article...

Recovery Report: GSA funds $4B in green building projects The General Services Administration has awarded $4 billion in economic stimulus funds for construction projects to make federal buildings more energy-efficient. More than 500 companies have received contracts for 391 projects funded by the GSA. The projects included retrofits of existing buildings, such as installing a solar roof on the Veterans Affairs building in Philadelphia, and construction of new buildings, such as a federal courthouse in Austin. View article...

8 Banks Closed on April 16 State and federal banking regulators closed eight banks on Friday, April 18. TD Bank acquired three of the institutions. All but one of the remaining five banks were acquired by other institutions. These latest closings raise to 56 the number of failed banks and credit unions so far in 2010. View article...

Feel free to contact me regarding any of these stories, the current market, distressed commercial real estate opportunities or your property.

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