Sperry Van Ness International Corporation’s (SVNIC) 2014 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 2014. Today we are delving into the 2014 Top Industrial Markets to Watch. Not the largest, or the most actively contested markets, the 2014 Industrial 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 INDUSTRIAL MARKET TO WATCH : Seattle and Tacoma, Washington
Seattle’s port handled 3 million TEUs of containerized cargo in 2013, placing it among the nation’s top five ports for finished goods. The port is PPMX-ready, meaning it has the required channel depth and cranes to handle the largest, fully loaded cargo ships that will be in common use following the reopening of the expanded Panama Canal in 2015. The nearby Port of Tacoma, too, has been PPMX-ready since 2011, after having dredged its channels to the necessary depth and adding massive gantry cranes. Tacoma’s containerized cargo volume has surged to more than 1 million TEUs per year as a result, and helped to fuel additional demand for industrial space. Falling market-wide vacancy is nearing 5 percent and demand for space is generating build-to-suits as well as accelerating absorption, which spiked to 1.5 million square feet in the fourth quarter of 2013 alone. The market added more than 1 million square feet of new space in 2013 and has more than twice that amount under construction. A strong employment base, rooted in energy and technology and enjoying a boost in aerospace manufacturing, has helped Seattle to more than recover the number of jobs it lost in the Great Recession. Projected household growth near 5 percent bodes well for the market’s distribution centers. While the newly refitted Port of Tacoma is expanding its market share of cargo traffic, Seattle is also feeling increased competitive pressure from Prince Rupert, a Canadian seaport in British Columbia that is also PPMX-ready following recent upgrades to its facilities.
To read more on Seattle and Tacoma, and other top industrial markets, download the full version of the Top Industrial Markets to Watch report below.
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