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.
Estate’s 2013 Pivot Points: Interest Rates, Gen Y, Health-Care Demand” by
Kris Hudson of The Wall Street Journal.
“Low interest rates, increasingly aggressive lending and
Generation Y’s housing preferences are among the top factors
shaping the U.S. real estate market this year,” writes Hudson in his
overview of a report released last week by the Counselors of Real Estate during
the National Association of Real Estate Editors conference in Atlanta.
Each year, the Counselors of Real Estate conducts a survey
of hundreds of its members to compile a ranking of the top 10 factors
influencing real estate, Hudson reports.
Among the 10 factors: struggling malls need to be
redeveloped; technology is reducing the need for office space; investors are
focused on global real estate; and the capital markets are returning.
Job Gains Might Stem Fed Easing” by John Salustri of GlobeSt.com.
Another disappointing jobs report out last week has real
estate experts weighing the impact that slow job growth will have on issues
such as the federal government’s quantitative easing and the low interest rate
environment, Salustri reports.
Chris Muoio, Auction.com’s New York-based economist, told
GlobeSt.com that the easing debate is “excessively premature. They won’t cut
back on easing until inflation takes off above 2.5 percent, and that’s way
higher than we are currently.”
Muoio and Ray Torto, CBRE’s global chief economist, both
agree that more permanent hiring needs to take place before cutbacks in
quantitative easing begin in earnest.
Torto says markets will remain volatile and real estate
investors need to plan for that volatility. “That means they need
to ‘have liquidity, avoid refinancing or an asset sale during a downdraft
moment in the market,’” Salustri writes.
America’s Graying Population” by Joan Mooney of Urban Land.
The biggest challenge for aging Baby Boomers will be
housing, according to speakers at a recent Atlantic magazine forum in
From 2010 to 2030, there will be a 70 percent increase in
the number of U.S. homeowners over 65 and a 100 percent increase in renters of
the same age, Mooney reports.
The country is unprepared for the surge in senior citizens
because it lacks adequate zoning and “age-appropriate” housing, panelists said.
Foods Bets Detroit” by Maura Webber Sadovi of The Wall Street Journal.
A property that has taken 15 years to develop is now the
home of Detroit’s first Whole Foods Market, and the long development period shows
how challenging it is to finish real-estate projects in the city, Sadovi
The property is part of a larger mixed-use development with
apartments, condominiums and retail space that is located in Detroit’s Midtown
area, Sadovi reports.
Peter Cummings, chairman of Ram, which is providing equity
and land for the project, believes Detroit can come back as a strong city with
a younger, but smaller, population.
Opening a store in cash-strapped Detroit will be a true test
for Whole Foods, which is known for locations in upscale areas of the country,
lands Coca-Cola IT center, 2,000 jobs” by Douglas Sams of Atlanta Business
The Coca-Cola Co. is moving almost 2,000 jobs from suburban
Atlanta to the city’s downtown, Sams reports.
The company has entered into a 275,868-square-foot-lease at
SunTrust Plaza’s Garden Offices for its new IT center. The center will bring
together nearly 2,000 of Coca-Cola’s Atlanta-based IT associates and
contractors into one central location, according to spokesman Kent Landers.
The SunTrust Plaza tower helps anchor a downtown business
district for Atlanta, Sams notes.