Will Increasing Land Deals Mean More CRE Development?

Ian Ritter is Online Content Manager at GRS Group

Ian Ritter is Online Content Manager at GRS Group

Commercial real estate development has mostly been stagnant since the recession, and with the exception of apartments and single-tenant retail parcels, not a lot has gone on.

However, this could be changing. Bob Sonnenblick of Sonnenblick Development recently told us how it’s a good time to be a developer in the hotel sector. There is also some spec office development in Denver.

Meanwhile, we are starting to see a lot of land deals that are expected to result in a variety of commercial real estate developments. Of course, land deals don’t mean that a project is guaranteed completion, but there are some encouraging signs out there.

A team at Colliers International South Florida has sold more than two million square feet of surplus land, in several parcels, for building materials corporation CEMEX, since 2011 and has more to market.

In South Carolina, an economic development group, the Lowcountry Economic Alliance, seeks $59 million to buy about 1,200 acres in the state’s south coast. It hopes to attract development by aerospace, technology and defense firms looking to expand.

Apparently there is even vacant land in New York City ripe for development, some think. Mayor Bill de Blasio wants about 200,000 units of affordable housing, as well as various retail projects developed on sites in the city, though those sites weren’t specified.

In Upstate New York, Kirchhoff Cos. is buying 1.5 acres in downtown Troy to build a $27-million mixed-use project that would include luxury apartments and a farmer’s market.

Do you see these land deals resulting in a flurry of new projects? Is commercial real estate development back in a big way?

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