Commercial Real Estate & Business News – May 21, 2015

This week's International Council of Shopping Centers (ICSC) RECon convention saw the strongest turnout in years, with at least 35,000 deal-makers attending annual retail property conference in Las Vegas. With retail sales edging back up and a lack of suitable sites, expanding retailers are prompting a fledgling wave of new development activity... Read more »
Retail landlords are finally sighing in relief as leasing begins to pick up in earnest. This year’s RECon show in Las Vegas has been marked by an across-the-board optimism about tenant activity, with both owners and brokers reporting a spike in meetings about new store openings and expansions... Read more »
Property valuations are expected to increase 5% over the next three years for a total of 15%, according to the RICS US Commercial Property Monitor for Q1-2015, which RICS is set to release Wednesday morning. That is the upper end of what might ordinarily be expected, as property values tend to grow in line with the economy, Simon Rubinsohn, RICS' chief economist tells Read more »
The rising volume of CMBS issuance has some in the industry questioning whether there is enough investor appetite to consume all those loans. After all, nearly $300 billion in conduit CMBS loan balance is set to mature in 2015, 2016 and 2017, more than 2.5 times the amount that matured from 2012 to 2014, according to research firm Trepp LLC. However, there appears to be abundant buyer demand to meet that growing supply... Read more »
A vision for a downtown health complex led by Arizona State University and the world’s wealthiest doctor could be approved May 19 by the city council after the first public presentation of the plan for expansion on the Phoenix Biomedical Campus. The council will consider amending ASU’s downtown lease or approving a new agreement to include about seven acres of undeveloped city land for a health-solutions project. The project would include labs, offices, academic institutes, clinical and manufacturing facilities, and monitoring and command centers...Read more »

Commercial Real Estate & Business News – May 15, 2015

Technology, demand and right-sizing are revolutionizing traditional office from every angle. O.CON: The Office Conference, hosted by Thought Leader NAIOP and held June 24-25 Houston, leads the conversation on what’s driving the future of office. The inaugural O.CON will showcase creative spaces and retrofits that meet today’s demand, and talk about what to do with dinosaur inventory, hear from end-users on space requirements, and talk with developers and investors who are doing the deals... Read more »
All eyes were on the industrial real estate sector when news broke last month of the Prologis/Norges Bank mega deal. The joint venture agreed to pay $5.9 billion for KTR Capital Partners and its 60 million sq. ft. of U.S. industrial space. This followed last year’s purchase of Blackstone’s IndCor Properties and its 117 million-sq.- ft. portfolio by GIC, Singapore’s sovereign wealth fund. The transaction set records at a massive $8.1 billion, and became the largest transaction in the history of the industrial asset class... Read more »
Trader Joe’s is America’s favorite grocery retailer for the third year in a row, according to a study of more than 7,200 consumers by Market Force Information. Publix ranked a close second and Aldi was third... Read more »
For the first time on record in December, monthly sales at restaurants exceeded grocery stores sales, according to data from the U.S. Census Bureau. This development was hinted at through preliminary data releases in recent months, but was officially confirmed by today’s annual benchmark of Census data... Read more »
If you want to understand the health of retail – follow the money. It ends up in a relatively small number of cash registers anyway. Just 10 food, staples and general retailers in the broad Standard & Poor’s 1500, including giant Wal-Mart (WMT), drugstore CVS Health (CVS) and membership-based seller Costco Wholesale (COST) collected two-thirds of all the revenue generated by this broad universe of publicly traded retailers over the past 12 months, according to a USA TODAY analysis of data from S&P Capital IQ based on most recently available data. The remaining 89 retailers account for the remaining third of revenue... Read more »

Commercial Real Estate & Business News – May 14, 2015

Fannie and Freddie Hit the Brakes on Multifamily Lending

Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac are trying to reign in robust multifamily lending that has them racing toward their annual production caps very early in the year. Fannie and Freddie have introduced rate hikes over the past few weeks and tightened underwriting as a means to slow lending activity. The rate increases have amounted to about a 50 basis point total increase in their rates... Read more »

​Exclusive: Lennar to break ground in July on Central Avenue-McDowell Road apartments

Lennar Corp. (NYSE: LEN) is scheduled to start construction in July on three new apartment developments in downtown Phoenix, Chandler and Tempe near Arizona State University. The trio of complexes total more than 1,000 units, said Nathan Stum, development manager of Lennar Multifamily... Read more »

Roosevelt Row Developer Building Second Phase of Downtown Phoenix Townhouses

Metrowest Development — the infill developer of a number of projects on Roosevelt Row — will start construction later this year on a second phase of townhouses at Fourth Avenue and McKinley Street. Metrowest also recently rehabilitated and sold two long empty, city-owned homes on Second Avenue. Metrowest partner Matt Seaman said the residences were built in 1904 and 1909, respectively... Read more »

Heritage Communities Plans $20M Senior Living Community in Glendale

Phoenix-based Telis Commercial Real Estate is teaming up with Omaha, Nebraska-based Heritage Communities to develop a $20 million senior living community in Glendale. Called Orchard Pointe at Arrowhead, the 100-unit senior care facility will be built on land just purchased on 67th Avenue just north of Bell Road in Glendale... Read more »

Allred Capital buys The Hermosa Inn

On Wednesday, May 6, the luxury boutique resort The Hermosa Inn, and its award-winning restaurant, LON’s at the Hermosa, was sold to Allred Capital LLLP. The partnership, led by Ronald Allred and his son Mike Allred, has been developing land, real estate and hospitality related ventures since the 1970s, including building the town of Avon near Vail, Colo., and developing the Telluride Ski Resort and the Telluride Mountain Village. The partnership also owns Rancho Manana Golf Club, in Cave Creek, is the lead investor and operator of Tubac Golf Resort & Spa, in Tubac, and has now added The Hermosa Inn to its historically-­‐oriented, hospitality portfolio... Read more »

Commercial Real Estate & Business News – May 12, 2015

Arizona's credit rating got a boost, with Moody's Investors Service raising the state government's financial grade to Aa2 from Aa3. The evaluation affects $2.5 billion of state debt, primarily on bondlike investments known as certificates of participation... Read more »
It was a positive week across the board for economic news. And there is now clear evidence that, as was hoped and expected, the slowdown in the 1st quarter was caused by temporary events and that there would be a 2nd quarter rebound. The bounce should continue. This doesn’t mean that the basic trend of a subpar expansion has changed. It means that at least it’s not worse than that and the expansion should continue... Read more »
The Pavilions announced the opening of a first-to-the-market Frontgate Outlet store. Frontgate is a leading brand in the aspirational home lifestyle for both indoors and outside. Frontgate is part of Cornerstone Brands, Inc. (CBI) which is a division of HSNi, a $3.3 billion interactive multi-channel retailer with strong direct-to-consumer expertise... Read more »
Upward Projects, the Phoenix-based hospitality company behind Postino as well as Joyride Taco House and Federal Pizza, announced Monday it is planning on opening Postino Highland near Scottsdale Fashion Square in October and another restaurant in Kierland Commons this November... Read more »
While the apartment industry is cyclical when it comes down to fundamentals like occupancy and rent growth, there are some things that come along and fundamentally change how the industry works. Here are three such game-changers to emerge over the last two decades... Read more »

Commercial Real Estate & Business News – May 11, 2015

New US Bank CRE Head Optimistic on 2015

Rudy tells that he expects that the economy will continue on its path of relatively measured growth, around 2% to 3% annual growth in GDP and the Fed will continue its policy of fostering a low interest environment. “This bodes well for us in the long-term”... Read more »

Rents Rise as Millennials Keep Forking Over the Cash conducted a survey of 1,000 millennial renters to find out how they are planning their next move, finding more than half (57%) rank affordability as the most important factor when choosing an apartment. Yet when asked, 55% said they are willing to spend up to $150 more per month in order to stay in an apartment they love. Nearly one in four respondents (24%) are willing to shell out an additional $400 a month, just to keep their pad... Read more »

In Arizona, an Aquarium Blooms

Construction has begun on OdySea, a 200,000-square-foot, two-million-gallon aquarium that is to open in July 2016. Displays will include a room showcasing 500 phosphorescent flashlight fish, a floor-to-ceiling view of the shark tank from the bathrooms and escalators in tunnels, “so you’re actually traveling through large aquariums as you make the journey to the bottom of the oceans,” said the lead developer, Amram Knishinsky... Read more »

Market Trend: Phoenix Office Vacancy Increases to 17.2%

The Phoenix Office market ended the first quarter 2015 with a vacancy rate of 17.2%. The vacancy rate was up over the previous quarter, with net absorption totaling positive 163,755 square feet in the first quarter. That compares to positive 1,008,131 square feet in the fourth quarter 2014. Vacant sublease space increased in the quarter, ending the quarter at 757,392 square feet... Read more »

ADOT Preps for $1.9B Loop 202 Extension

As part of the process of moving toward the 2016 start of construction for the Loop 202 South Mountain Freeway, Arizona Department of Transportation crews will begin the preliminarily geotechnical investigation in early May, assessing the condition of soil, rock and depth of groundwater along the freeway alignment. In addition to the geotechnical testing, ADOT has issued an RSOQ for General Engineering Consultant Services due in late June... Read more »

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