Shopping Centers Today

AUG 2018

Shopping Centers Today is the news magazine of the International Council of Shopping Centers (ICSC)

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Construction is under way on the 134-acre Waterview Town Center A U G U S T 2 0 1 8 / S C T 45 catalyst for growth on the southwest side of city, is located across from Dis- ney World and the Orlando Vineland Premium Outlets mall. e intense growth of this market is escalating the rents, which are now 50 to 100 percent higher than they were about five years ago, according to CBRE. "[Leasing] transactions are definitely taking a lot longer to get done," said James Mitchell, a CBRE senior vice president. "ere is a lot of competition for in-fill, high-profile projects. We are dealing with rents that are approaching $38, $42, even $50 a foot on some projects, and our clients are having a hard time finding projects that make sense for them. e competition is intense, everyone wants the same project, and rents are just at a peak level again." Real estate values are on the rise too, which is slowing up the devel- opment market, says Mitchell. "Land pricing has started to become what I would almost call untenable to jump- start new development," he said, "be- cause land sellers have gotten almost to peak pricing, where they were at during the last upswing." None of this is stopping grocers from entering. "Whereas during the last upswing it was a lot of apparel retailers, that has really switched to be a lot more about daily needs," said Mitchell. Among the newcomers are Earth Fare, Lucky Supermarkets and Sprouts Farmers Market — three organic grocers that are challenging Publix, which has dominated the Florida grocery market for years. Toronto-based North American Development Group owns three retail projects in Orlando now and is seek- ing further expansion there. "We are trying to do more, because Orlando is one of the hottest markets in the country, and retail performs excep- tionally well, almost across the board," said Jeff Preston, the firm's managing partner for the Southeast region. "e huge population growth and unparal- leled tourism are a great combination for retail." n dretti Indoor Karting & Games, both of which opened new venues near Uni- versal Orlando Resort last year. "We are seeing a real fusion between what is entertainment and what is retail, much like we are seeing in a lot of the rest of the country," said Greider. Orlando's population growth now stands at over 277,000, up from about 200,000 in 2015. "e way of life in Orlando is very nice," said Jill Gull, a vice president at Orlando-based Stiles Realty, which developed 300,000 square feet of retail space at the mixed-use Gardens on Millenia. at project opened in 2016 near the city's largest retail center, the 1.1 million- square-foot Mall at Millenia. "Or- lando is a clean area, it's wholesome, with the theme parks, and [it's] a great place to attract a family," Gull said. "It's not just orange groves any more; it's really more of a competitive city. ere's more commercial develop- ment here, and [there are] more jobs here, and that's what's driving more of these rooops." Several major mixed-use projects are dominating retail development in Orlando at the moment. e largest is O-Town West, a $1 billion mixed-use development on 82 acres that is one of the largest to be undertaken in the metro area in decades. Unicorp Na- tional Developments unveiled plans for the project this year, consisting of 100,000 square feet of retail, a grocery store, 15,000 apartments and about 400 single-family homes around a recreational lagoon. "at is going to be one of the most exciting things to watch here in Orlando for probably the next five to 10 years," said Greider. "e scale of that project is unlike anything we have seen in Orlando." e project, a Orlando's population now exceeds 277,000, up from 200,000 in 2015

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