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.

“Urban
Flight Encourages More Adaptive Reuse”
by Robert Carr of National Real
Estate Investor (note: registration required to view link).

As more residents and companies move back into urban areas
across the country, investors and cities are looking to reuse old buildings for
new development, Carr reports.

Most are of these buildings are being redeveloped according
to LEED specifications, Carr reports.

Cities see adaptive reuse as a way to transform a vacant
property into a usable site that provides increased tax revenue, but municipalities
usually require the exteriors of historic properties to remain intact, Carr
notes. 

Some cities, such as Los Angeles, have gone as far as
waiving various restrictions and required variances to encourage the adaptation
of economically obsolete buildings, Carr reports.

“Office
Parks Get a Makeover”
by Laura Kusisto of The Wall Street Journal.

Local officials in suburban areas from California to New
Jersey are approving plans to turn blighted, aging office parks into
urban-style complexes with apartments, retail, bike paths and office space,
Kusisto reports. 

“Suburban office buildings are passé,” Burrell Saunders, a
principal at Lyall Design who has redesigned suburban corporate spaces across
the country, told Kusisto. “We need to have office space integrated into daily
life.”

The demand for suburban office space has plummeted. In 1988
and 1989, developers created more than 160 million square feet of new suburban
office space in the United States, compared with just more than 12 million
square feet in 2011 and 2012, according to CBRE Group.

It’s not clear yet whether these redevelopments will attract
residents, retailers and companies, Kusisto notes. 

“Shoppers
Want More from Malls”
by Carisa Chappell of REIT.com.

During the recession, the mall transformed from just a place
to shop to more of a community event center and social gathering spot,
theorizes Michael Glimcher, CEO and chairman of Glimcher Realty Trust.

Glimcher Realty recently released the Glimcher Retail
Monitor, a survey of shoppers’ behavior that found that the appeal of a
physical shopping center has a lot to do with the chance to be social.

Eighty percent of U.S. consumers prefer to go shopping with
a companion, and sit-down restaurants and community events compel consumers to go
to a mall instead of shopping online, the survey found.

Glimcher Realty is adapting its portfolio of malls to these
changes in consumer preferences by adding high-quality food choices and bringing
in services like grooming and fitness centers, Glimcher told REIT.com.

• “Will
Building Boom End the Party for Apt. Investors?”
by Randyl Drummer of
CoStar.

By 2015, the high occupancy and pricing power enjoyed by
apartment developers and investors could end as a huge wave of new supply hits
the market, Drummer reports.

Multifamily pricing continued to post the strongest results
of all product types during the first quarter, but there are sings of a
deceleration in apartment fundamentals because of new supply, according to the CoStar
Commercial Repeat Sale Indices.

Financing has been easy to come by, especially from Fannie
Mae and Freddie Mac lenders, and has driven developers to jump at the
opportunity to build, Drummer reports.

“VIDEO:
Retailers Focus on Cost Savings”
by Ian Ritter of GlobeSt.

In
this clip
, GlobeSt.com sits down with Mark Dufton and Neill Kelly of DJM
Realty at the recent RECon conference in Las Vegas to discuss the outlook of
the retail sector. Dufton and Kelly touch on the positivity they saw among
conference attendants, how retailers are approaching real estate and the strength
of the retail landlord.