Sperry Van Ness International Corporation’s (SVNIC) 2015 Top Markets to Watch Reports assess the current state of the national commercial real estate market, and identify micro-trends within specific geographic regions and industries for 2015. Today we are delving into the 2015 Top Retail Markets to Watch. Not the largest or the most actively contested markets, the 2015 Retail Markets to Watch are each at an important juncture that presents unique opportunities for investment. Together, they reflect the diversity of trends that is driving the economy and commercial real estate performance in markets across the country.
Top Retail Market to Watch: Manhattan, NY
Retail is booming, as it always seems to be, in the major shopping districts of Manhattan. The Fifth Avenue corridor below Central Park has stolen Hong Kong’s Causeway Bay crown as the most expensive retail market, with rents for the top deals exceeding $3,000 per square foot. Even when incumbents leave the luxury corridor, their spaces are not vacant for long. Microsoft announced it would take over the space vacated by Fendi, which moved to a no-less-swanky Madison Avenue location in 2014. Microsoft’s new location will be its first flagship to compete with the ubiquitous Apple retail stores.
New York City neighborhoods are seeing an increase in demand for space driven by a strong local economy and large-scale infrastructure and development projects that will transform entire submarkets. In Lower Manhattan, several national tenants are actively in search of spaces near the World Trade Center as the full vision for the neighborhood reaches fruition. Saks Fifth Avenue announced that it would take 90,000 square feet in the adjacent Brookfield Place center as well as open a Saks Off 5th store in 1 Liberty Plaza, the first of its kind in Manhattan. Additionally, Neiman Marcus announced plans to open its first Manhattan location in 2018 at the Shops at Hudson Yards, currently under construction. Not every part of the borough can boast runaway success in retail leasing. While residential investors are betting on the opening of the Second Avenue Subway in East Harlem and the Upper East Side, retail leasing activity has not picked up significantly in anticipation of the new line.
To read more on Manhattan and other top retail markets, download the full version of the 2015 Top Retail Markets to Watch report here.
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