Global commercial real estate investment volumes rose 4% last year from 2017's total, reaching $733 billion, the best annual performance in a decade, according to a report from JLL. This year, global investment volumes are predicted to drop 5% to 10% as investors become more cautious and selective.
The Federal Reserve's recent signal of a more cautious approach to raising interest rates led economist Mark Dotzour to speculate that the rising interest-rate cycle may have peaked last year. Tom Fish, executive managing director with JLL, says investors should keep an eye out for a potential bubble.
Brookfield Properties is starting the process to redevelop Houston Center, a 4.2 million-square-foot office complex that Brookfield acquired for $875 million. The project will include a new central plaza and green space featuring a digital water wall and entertainment space.
Coworking company Spaces is taking 42,883 square feet at One CocoWalk, the office portion of Miami's CocoWalk lifestyle center, which is owned by a partnership involving Federal Realty Investment Trust, Grass River Property and Comras. The five-story office property, set for delivery in 2020, is now half leased.
Amazon hasn't figured out how to compete with experiential real estate, said Edward Pitoniak, CEO of VICI Properties. "If it's a great place-based experience, it is something that Amazon, at least yet, has not figured out how to put in a box [and] ship to your house, such that it dislocates the real estate literally and figuratively," he said.
Investors should take care not to confuse farming with farmland, said Paul Pittman, CEO of Farmland Partners. "Farming is risky on an annual basis. ... But farmland is based on a 50-year view ... of global food demand and land scarcity," he said.
Some department stores and high street brands continue to do well even as others close their doors, and that success comes from knowing their core customer and delivering on trends. Joules is one successful example, as the fashion retailer follows a total retail model with online and offline sales and continues to develop a loyal customer base.
Brookfield Properties, which purchased the Houston Center in 2017, plans to start a large-scale renovation of the property in February. Among the upgrades will be a new central plaza, green space, new dining and retail, a coworking space, a fitness center and an entertainment area.
The 367,918-square-foot Harvest Junction retail center in Longmont, Colo., has been sold to a partnership between Walton Street Capital and Alberta Development Partners. The property was 100% leased at the time of the sale and features Lowe's, Dick's Sporting Goods and other large retailers.
The initial phase of the Town Center portion of a retail and residential development in Fayetteville, Ga., has gotten underway, with completion expected in early 2020. The project will include 40,000 square feet of retail space, as well as 263 apartments.