Input Opportunity for the Charlotte Gateway Project

The City of Charlotte and North Carolina Department of Transportation (NCDOT) are advancing the planning, design, and construction of the Charlotte Gateway Station (CGS) Project.  A focal point of the CGS Project will be the development of a multi-modal facility that includes a variety of transportation connections.

Public open houses will be held:

  • August 1, 5:00 p.m. – 6:30 pm
  • August 3, 12:30 p.m. – 1:30 pm

Charlotte Mecklenburg Library Main Branch, Francis Auditorium – 310 North Tryon Street, Charlotte, NC 28202

If your schedule does not allow you to attend, there is still an opportunity to provide your input.  Please feel free to contact either Tina Votaw at (704) 432-3013; tvotaw@charlottenc.gov or Genevieve Rubrecht at (704) 342-5419; rubrechtg@pbworld.com.  Thank you!

Commercial Real Estate Conference 2016

NAIOP provides education, networking and events all tailored to help you stay ahead of the industry curve. Make deals, strengthen connections and explore trends with 1,200+ CRE leaders from across North America. You’ll have unlimited opportunities to build the partnerships that will help you advance your business. Explore services that can give you a competitive edge with exhibitors from top CRE companies.

New this year!

Conversation Corners are facilitated small-group discussions that provide additional education and networking opportunities throughout the day. Take advantage of these 30- to 45-minute discussions on hot industry topics in a casual setting.

EARLY BIRD DEADLINE, HOTEL AND TOURS:

  • Note that Discounted rates are available until July 29, so please register now to save $270 on regular registration fees!
  • Make your hotel reservations at the Fairmont Scottsdale Princess, our conference host hotel, and ask for the discounted NAIOP room rate.
  • There is an exciting lineup of project tours of the Phoenix market that can be selected during registration.  The spots are available on a first come, first served basis and fill up quickly.

 

Wall Street Loves Industrial REITs

Industrial REITs are becoming a growing favorite on Wall Street, largely because of the continuing growth in e-commerce.According to Reuters, “With Amazon and other e-commerce sites continuing to take market share from malls and other physical retailers, U.S. mutual fund managers are upping their bets on an overlooked part of the online shopping boom: warehouses.”

Share prices for the companies that own those fulfillment centers, including Prologis and Duke Realty, are up by 15 percent or more year to date, outpacing both the 3 percent increase in the benchmark S&P 500 and the 9.9 percent rise in the Dow Jones All REIT index. Rents are also rising, and occupancy rates are at their highest level since 2000. Reuters quotes Nate Weisshaar, a portfolio manager at Motley Fool Asset Management: “We think the shift to e-commerce is just going to create more demand for warehouses and while those aren’t the sexiest parts of the industry, that’s where the demand is.”

The article adds that “Some fund managers expect the rally to continue, in part because of a technical change by S&P that will recognize real estate as its own sector, rather than a part of financials. That will require active U.S. equity fund managers – who have traditionally been underweight [in] real estate – to buy more than $100 billion in real estate shares to reach a market neutral position, according to J.P. Morgan.”

Fiber-optic Connections Becoming Crucial for Office Building

As fiber-optic networks become critical to workplace productivity, buildings and municipalities without access to those networks may be at a competitive disadvantage, according to Colliers International Canada. The company notes that, “The demand for efficient telecommunication infrastructure is increasing beyond technical service companies, as more corporations across all industries adopt internet intensive strategies such as big data analytics, cloud computing or mobile device solutions.”

“While there are numerous benefits to choosing an office location that is fibre optic-ready,” the report continues, “this is often a challenging task for companies in the GTA [Greater Toronto Area] and North America in general. The supply of office suites that are connected with fibre is low as the GTA does not have a complete fibre optic network. This is partially because constructing an underground fibre optic network throughout a neighbourhood can be expensive and time-consuming. Even when a neighbourhood network is constructed and buildings become ‘fibre available,’ the individual buildings need to be wired throughout each office suite – a costly proposition.”

The report focuses on Markham, Ontario, “a municipality that is continually developing advanced fibre optic infrastructure” and, consequently, putting itself at a competitive advantage when it comes to attracting companies that rely on this infrastructure.

Top 10 US Industrial Markets

U.S. industrial markets absorbed more than 132 million square feet (msf) in the first half of 2016, including a record-setting 70.1 msf in the second quarter, up 6 percent from the same period a year ago, according to Cushman & Wakefield. Thirty-eight markets saw over 1 msf of absorption during the second quarter; 11 of those experienced over 2 msf of absorption. “This marked 25 consecutive quarters of net occupancy gains for the industrial sector with the current quarter’s absorption reaching a new cyclical high,” Cushman & Wakefield reports.

“On the development front, 99.9 msf of industrial product has been delivered in 2016 with 46.9 msf of it coming online in the second quarter. Major industrial markets, port cities, and primary inland distribution hubs have welcomed the majority of industrial deliveries this year.” These industrial deliveries are increasingly speculative in nature, the company adds: “Speculative projects have accounted for 71.5 msf (or 72%) of year-to-date deliveries and developers continue to break ground on more speculative developments as vacancy rates in many markets remain at or near historical lows.”

The top 10 strongest markets in the second quarter, in terms of demand for industrial space, were:

  1. Southern California’s Inland Empire, with 8.2 msf of absorption.
  2. Chicago, 7.3 msf.
  3. Dallas/Fort Worth, 4.5 msf.
  4. Atlanta, 3.6 msf.
  5. Greenville, South Carolina, 3.6 msf.
  6. Pennsylvania’s I-81/I-78 Distribution Corridor, 3.6 msf
  7. Indianapolis, 2.7 msf.
  8. Phoenix, 2.2 msf.
  9. Central New Jersey, 2.2 msf.
  10. Northern California’s East Bay, 2.2 msf.

Social Media for Development Projects

Commercial real estate developers should recognize opportunities to use social media to raise awareness and build community support.

Property owners and a community group have been successfully using social media to promote and inform residents and others about the redevelopment of the White Flint neighborhood in Montgomery County, Maryland, in the suburbs of Washington, D.C., for almost a decade.Combined Properties Inc., Federal Realty Investment Trust, Gables Residential, the Holladay Corp., The JBG Companies and Lerner Enterprises teamed up in 2007 as the White Flint Partnership to coordinate some of their development outreach efforts.

Their plans included new grids of streets and the conversion of the district to a mixed-use walkable neighborhood, with new public infrastructure financed by a proposed special assessment tax on the developers themselves. (For more on these plans, see “Retail Streetscape Development.”) The owners then discovered that they and local residents had a common goal: to convince the county to tame and civilize a traffic-clogged and ugly arterial.

In 2009, the White Flint Partnership started a vigorous dialog with the community, using both traditional media — polling, focus groups, slide presentations, meetings and a mailing to 40,000 homes — and a social media platform that included a website, aFacebook page, e-mail blasts to a growing list of supporters, a listserv and a blog, for an extensive education and advocacy campaign.

Click here to read the full article written by Sam Black.

Building for Wellness

Workplaces that enhance employee health and well-being also enhance productivity — and employers’ financial bottom lines.

Companies throughout North America are handing out fitness trackers, stocking their workplaces with nap pods and providing stipends for employees to relocate near the office, reducing their carbon footprint as well as their commute time. In other words, these companies are overwhelmingly demonstrating how much they value wellness in the workplace, by directly investing in programs to support employee well-being.

Employers are spending more on wellness-based initiatives than ever. TheNational Business Group on Health estimates that large companies spend almost $700 per employee on wellness-based incentives annually, up from $430 per year in 2010. Often, this money is spent on items like gift cards and complimentary health assessments that sometimes go unused.

But there’s another approach, one that unilaterally improves the productivity and happiness of all employees: designing and building for wellness.

Click here to read the full article written by Ed Klimeck.