Daily News for Commercial Real Estate & Business – January 22, 2010

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

To view this week's "The Watch List," by Costar, click here. There are a couple article discussing the capital markets and REITs raising funds. There is a lot of information about different banks that are being downgraded as well.

HOTEL MONROE & 44 MONROE CONDOS TARGETED IN FORECLOSURES . . . $162+ MILLION IN DEFAULT

Phoenix - In separate foreclosure actions, trustee's sales have been scheduled on $162.429 million in loans that are secured by the Hotel Monroe and 182 condominiums within the 44 Monroe residential tower in downtown Phoenix. Both projects are owned by companies formed by principals of Grace Communities in Scottsdale.
Full story

BLANDFORD HOMES SPENDS $15+ MILLION FOR 775 LOTS SOLD BY WACHOVIA BANK

Gilbert/Chandler/Pinal County - In sales totaling a combined $15.36+ million, companies formed by Blandford Homes LLC in Gilbert (Jeff Blandford, principal) have acquired 775 finished lots in six different communities in Maricopa and Pinal counties. The home sites were sold by Wachovia Bank through trustee's sales. The home builder paid cash for the properties.
Full story

Planned office park could employ 9,000

Plans are afoot to transform the 152-acre former Motorola site on Chandler's Price Road technology corridor into a large office park called Continuum, capable of employing up to 9,000 people, according to some estimates.

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Culvers frozen custard opens 5th store

Culver's Restaurant is expected to open its fifth Phoenix-area restaurant next month. The Wisconsin-based frozen-custard chain's new location will be at 825 E. Camelback Road, company officials said. The restaurant joins stores at 1825 W. Deer Valley in Phoenix; MetroCenter, Phoenix; 1909 S. Country Club Drive, Mesa; and 16145 W. Bell Road, Surprise.

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$3.1 million Chrysalis Women's Shelter breaks ground

Chrysalis Women's Shelter broke ground Wednesday on a $3.1 million shelter that is part of a four-phase plan to expand services for women and their children affected by domestic violence.

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Chicago Cubs likely to stay in Mesa

The Mesa City Council is expected to approve an $84 million project for the Chicago Cubs on Monday to keep the team's spring home in Mesa.

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Jerry Colangelo: Phoenix must diversify economy

Jerry Colangelo told Phoenix executives Thursday morning that the region must diversify from its reliance on the hospitality industry and population growth to succeed in the new economy.

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Arizona unemployment exceeds 9 percent

Arizona's jobless rate jumped two-tenths of a point last month, to 9.1 percent, as small gains in private sector employment were more than wiped out by losses in education. And all indications are that the situation won't get better any time soon.

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E.V. bucks trend with home permit increase

The Valley's new home market may have hit a new modern-day low last year, but the East Valley bucked that trend with an increase in new home construction permits, according to the latest Phoenix Housing Market Letter from analyst RL Brown.

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Stealthmode, Mesa group launching incubator

Stealthmode Partners and West Mesa Community Development Corp. are partnering on a business incubator that will be located just outside the city's downtown. The West Mesa Business Incubator will offer entrepreneurs training and information about building a company.

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CRE Troubles Hurting Big/Small Banks Alike

According to Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. Chairman Sheila Bair, troubled commercial real estate loans are hurting both large and small banks alike. Bair also says that CRE mortgage woes are in many ways "even more pronounced" than those in the residential market.

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M&M Ranks Retail Markets (Phoenix ranked 8th from the bottom)

There is major representation from West Coast markets on both lists. Stronger markets include urban centers like San Francisco, San Diego, Orange County, Calif., Los Angeles, Portland, Ore. and Seattle-Tacoma, Wash.

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To view my responses at the CCIM/IREM Economic Forecast from last week, click here. I look forward to hearing your comments from the presentation.

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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