Commercial Real Estate & Business News – April 28, 2016

Housing remains the bright spot in a darkening economic outlook according to Freddie Mac's economists. Though they have revised their forecast for economic growth downward in the latest edition of the company's Outlook they are still forecasting housing will retain its momentum in 2016. First quarter data painted "a bleak picture" of economic growth the report says. Information on consumer spending, manufacturing, auto and retail sales...Read more »
Earlier this year, we shared news that Sam Fox would be opening a brand-new concept in the Valley, off 44th Street and Indian School Road. And though the details of that concept are still unclear, we now know a bit more about the upcoming shopping center the restaurant will sit in, as well as who its neighbors will be... Read more »
Millennials, often burdened with student loan debt and at the early stages of their careers, often choose to rent over buying. But now that Bank of America has launched a program with Freddie Mac to issue new mortgages for low- and middle-income earners, could the homeownership program help reverse the Millennial rental trend—and eat into multifamily profits? First, let’s take a quick look at what exactly the mortgage program does... Read more »
he Southeast Regional Association of REALTORS (SEVRAR), the largest realty association in Arizona, has purchased a 3.1 acre site for its office headquarters at Chandler Airport Center. The site was purchased for a build-to-suit office and conference facility, and the project has an expected completion date of early 2018...Read more »
With a proud history of revitalizing retail centers, De Rito Partners Development, Inc. is excited to announce the ongoing redevelopment and re-tenant efforts at Arcadia Fiesta, located at the southwest corner of 32nd Street and Indian School Road in Phoenix. “The new center will bring a fresh and newly upgraded shopping experience to this neighborhood... Read more »

Commercial Real Estate & Business News – April 27, 2016

For the last few years, the multifamily asset class has been the top performer of all property types, delivering a per-unit revenue (market rent x occupancy) growth rate of 4.8 percent in 2015. Some markets clearly outperformed others. These included Portland, Ore., San Francisco, Oakland, Calif. and Sacramento, Calif., all of which saw per-unit revenue growth rates above 7.5 percent last year. But there is much concern that developers have been adding too much inventory, flooding some markets with new supply. This will inevitably raise vacancy rates...Read more »
Returns on commercial real estate continued moderating in the first quarter, the National Council of Real Estate Investment Fiduciaries said Monday afternoon. However, Chicago-based NCREIF noted that while returns were weaker in Q1, CRE fundamentals remained solid, while investment sales volume on properties within the NCREIF universe was up by double digits year over year. For Q1, the total return on the NCREIF Property Index was 2.21%, down... Read more »
Intel Corp. has reported 560 worker layoffs at the semiconductor company's Chandler operations. The job cuts will happen at two Intel campuses in Chandler, according to written notifications from the company. Intel will layoff 248 workers from its Dobson Road location and another 312 from its Chandler Boulevard campus... Read more »
Nearly five months after tourism officials began urging Mesa to pursue a state-of-the-art sports and tournament complex, council members are still split over whether to put the $56 million facility on the November ballot — and time is running out. The proposal for the dual-stadium, indoor-outdoor complex — which would have 24 fields, 8,000 seats and a 110,000-square-foot field house — has attracted regional support since the concept was presented in December... Read more »
It's pretty safe to say that the restaurant business in the United States is about as healthy as it's ever been. According to a Bloomberg report, March 2015 marked the first time since data began being collected by the U.S. Commerce Department in 1992 that Americans spent more eating out at bars and restaurants than on purchasing groceries in stores and supermarkets... Read more »

Commercial Real Estate & Business News – April 26, 2016

Students are quickly signing leases to live at off-campus student housing communities when the new academic year starts this fall, pushing rents higher despite competition from the thousands of new student housing beds that developers plan to deliver. “Pre-leasing is ahead of last year at this time,” says Kenny Emson, senior vice president of finance and administration for the National Multifamily Housing Council... Read more »
A 100,000-square-foot flex industrial building is going up at the corner of Gilbert and Queen Creek Roads. The flex industrial concept is unique in that it allows a mix of uses within the same tenant space such as retail or a showroom in the same building as office, R&D, a lab, a call center or distribution or manufacturing uses. Construction is expected to begin in July with completion in first quarter 2017, according to developer, The Rockefeller Group... Read more »
Old Town Scottsdale is getting another new restaurant concept. Farm + Craft is opening in June at the former Stingray Sushi at 4302 N. Scottsdale Road, under the ownership of Riot Hospitality Group, which owns popular Old Town bars Hefe and Dierks Bentley’s Whiskey Row. The new concept will be fast-casual, offering dining options throughout the day, with full service in the evenings. Farm + Craft is heavily focused on healthy eating...Read more »
The urban cluster of high-density housing, offices and retail shops emerging in north Scottsdale could soon take another leap forward with about 1,000 condos or apartments proposed by two developers. Both would rank among the area's largest residential complexes while adding an array of new stores and restaurants near Scottsdale Quarter, Kierland Commons and the Scottsdale Airpark, one of metro Phoenix's largest employment centers...Read more »
Scottsdale will have its second Postino WineCafe next week. The seventh Postino in the Valley — dubbed Postino Highland — will open Wednesday, May 4 in the former Valley National Bank at 4821 N. Scottsdale Road. Upward Projects, the Phoenix-based group behind Postino and other notable eateries such as Windsor and Joyride Tacos, had been eyeing the building for some time... Read more »

Commercial Real Estate & Business News – April 25, 2016

With little fanfare, Arizona in recent months finally closed the books on the recession, with statewide employment now higher than it was prior to the downturn. Arizona’s largest non-government employers are doing their part, gradually boosting their job totals... Read more »
The Greater Phoenix office market got off to a steady start during the first quarter. Net absorption was positive, vacancies ticked lower and rents rose. Further strengthening is likely in the months ahead, as employers continue to expand payrolls. Employers added more than 70,000 new jobs in 2015—the strongest calendar year of growth since 2005—and similar gains are forecast for 2016 and 2017... Read more »
Large national lenders will remain active in the larger metro markets, and regional and local lenders will remain the option for small metros, MetroGroup Realty Finance’s founder Patrick Ward tells As we head further into Q2, we spoke exclusively with Ward about financing for the commercial real estate sector and what to anticipate for the rest of the quarter and the remainder of the year... Read more »
A Las Vegas developer wants to turn land near the Westgate Entertainment District, University of Phoenix Stadium and a new casino into a 340-unit apartment development. Vegas-based Fore Property Co. wants to get the land rezoned and develop apartments on parcels that are still used as farmland on occasion... Read more »
Edison Midtown, a new Midtown Phoenix condominium tower by Scottsdale-based developer Deco Communities is blazing ahead with construction to meet the growing demand from all over the Valley for new for-sale residential in Midtown Phoenix. With dozens of buyers already lined up to move in, the project is on track for an early spring 2017 completion. “There is an incredible burst of energy happening in the Midtown neighborhood right now,”...Read more »

Commercial Real Estate & Business News – April 22, 2016

The U.S. office market appears to be at the stage in the real estate cycle that analysts often describe as a turning point or tipping point. Overall, the U.S. office market continued to post solid fundamentals during the first quarter, including very strong net absorption, while traces of a slowdown in demand appeared in some markets. "We are seeing mixed signals in the marketplace, although our expectation is the office market will continue to do fairly well for the next few years,"... Read more »
Plans for a proposed apartment complex in downtown Tempe that divided the community has been withdrawn by the developer, reports The Arizona Republic. The move came following a number of proposed revisions to the project and attempts to appease concerns of nearby neighbors and members of the Tempe City Council. Urban Development Partners had proposed a 13-story apartment complex on less than 2 acres of city-owned land at the corner of University Drive and Farmer Avenue... Read more »
The apartment market is showing signs of moderation, as the latest quarterly survey of market conditions from the National Multifamily Housing Council shows two of the survey’s four indexes landing below the breakeven level of 50. With readings of 43 and 45, respectively, the Market Tightness and Equity Financing indexes have declined for two quarters in a row. Conversely, Sales Volume at 53 and Debt Financing at 50 indicated conditions improving and holding steady, respectively, in those indexes... Read more »
Apartments have been a preferred property buy of late, thanks in no small part to a recent surge in value-add deals. Last year, sales of multifamily properties topped all other property types according to CoStar Group data. A total of $159 billion in U.S. multifamily property sales closed in 2015, just eclipsing the $156 billion for sales of office properties. This marks the first time this century that office building sales did not top the list... Read more »
A derelict Scottsdale restaurant recently highlighted among the worst East Valley’s eyesores may be razed to make room for a mixed use retail/residential project, if a developer’s plans are approved by the city. Once home to savory paellas and the raucous clack of flamenco dancers, Pepin restaurant has been closed since early last year. Since then, it has fallen into disrepair, leaving a blight on the western edge of the Scottsdale Civic Park in between the popular AZ88 and Jewel of the Crown... Read more »
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