Each Wednesday, The Wrap presents a compilation of recent noteworthy commercial real estate stories from a variety of publications. Below are five stories that caught our eyes in recent days.
• “At ICSC, New Concepts, New Approaches” by Natalie Dolce of GlobeSt.com.
GlobeSt.com is covering the events at ICSC RECon 2013 in Las Vegas this week, reporting on the trends that retail industry executives are discussing at the conference.
Financing for retail projects continues to improve as the economy improves, even in secondary and tertiary markets, Patrick Crandall of C&W told GlobeSt.com during his firm’s reception.
Gary Mozer of George Smith Partners told the outlet that lenders are looking past “quantitative basics” when determining whether to finance an asset.
“Today, lenders are much more focused on the longevity of the asset’s income stream and are delving deeper into the long-term viability of a retail property’s tenants,” Mozer said.
A running theme throughout many RECon discussions has been brick-and-mortar retail’s resilience over Internet shopping, Dolce reports. Retail centers that offer a “human experience” that can’t be replicated online will do well, said Craig Killman of Jones Lang LaSalle.
• “Retail Development Back on the Horizon” by Elaine Misonzhnik of National Real Estate Investor.
As the retail real estate market continues to improve, industry players are beginning to conceive new projects, Elaine Misonzhnik reports from RECon.
Publicly traded REITs like Taubman Centers and Regency Centers are in the planning stages for new centers. These new centers will most likely be in urban markets with smaller footprints, Misonzhnik reports.
Even smaller regional developers have been thinking about new projects that could start within the next few years, according to Misonzhnik.
• “Retail Rent Growth Finally Takes Root Across U.S. Metros” by Randyl Drummer of CoStar.
Quoted asking rents are finally rising across all retail property types for the first time since 2008, according to CoStar’s “First Quarter 2013 Retail Review and Outlook.”
This growth is a result of more than two years of recovery in the sector’s operating fundamentals, according to CoStar real estate economist Ryan McCullough.
CoStar expects retail construction to increase some in 2013. Outlet centers are the first wave of new development, with six centers across the country under construction and about another dozen in planning, Drummer reports.
• “Restaurants, Luxury Tenants Are Once Again in Expansion Mode” by Elaine Misonzhnik of National Real Estate Investor.
The retail real estate market is gaining traction, but leasing activity and aggressive expansion are still more prevalent in larger, urban markets, according to leasing executives attending RECon.
Restaurants, luxury retailers and apparel sellers have been among the most active tenants at high-end retail sites in metro New York, Francis X. Scire Jr. of Simon Property Group told Misonzhnik.
Kemper Development reports lots of interest from high-end retailers like Tesla Motors, Microsoft and Apple, at The Bellevue Collection, the firm’s Class-A property in Bellevue, Wash.
But for retail properties in many secondary and tertiary markets, conditions aren’t as favorable. Some shopping centers built during the boom in markets like Atlanta will have to be redeveloped for other uses, according to Scott Prigge of Regency Centers.
• “Construction Picks Up across South, Metro Atlanta” by Douglas Sams of the Atlanta Business Chronicle.
The southern region of the United States — stretching from Texas to Georgia and up to the Carolinas — has a construction backlog of 9.3 months, the longest backlog of any U.S. region, according to recent data from the Associated Builders and Contractors.
The backlog gauges construction work that will be performed by industrial and commercial contractors in the coming months, Sams reports.
Atlanta has seen construction demand pick up in the housing, retail and industrial sectors, Sams reports. The new Falcons stadium slated for Atlanta could be a major catalyst for new development in the city’s downtown core, he adds.