Commercial Real Estate News Brief: August 2013

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Commercial real estate is a dynamic industry. Keep up with Spaces’ monthly recaps of the most valuable industry articles we’ve recently come across, focused on news in Ohio, Michigan and Pennsylvania. 

Retail Development Meets Multifamily in the Mixed-Use Market

The multifamily market “is now resurfacing throughout the nation,” according to a recent article from As the market continues to flourish, a new trend toward mixed-use development emerges.

Retail and multifamily mixed-use projects have historically not been a popular combination, said Now, a shift in retail spending—“many apartment residents now prefer to spend dollars closer to home”—has created new opportunities for retail success in mixed-use assets.

In Cincinnati, Black Iron Capital, LLC, is planning mixed-use development (with both retail and apartment units) at the Schwartz office building, according to the Business Courier. A major mixed-use development project is also underway in Columbus at the Scioto Peninsula. This will include a mix of retail and residential, among other assets, according to Columbus Underground.

High-Tech Market Drives Demand for Office Space


High-tech employment in Pittsburgh–from JLL’s United States High-Technology Office Outlook 2013.

The high-technology industry is growing rapidly—fueling office real estate demand across the nation. JLL recently released its High-Technology Office Outlook, in which analysts examined top-performing local markets, as well as the industry’s impact on widespread demand. According to JLL:

“High-tech has stimulated not only real estate recovery and expansion, but a wave of new developments. The 12 core high-tech markets tracked in this report account for nearly 50.0 percent of total U.S. construction at more than 23 million square feet.”

JLL listed Pittsburgh among the top emerging markets—behind San Diego and Los Angeles, among other large cities. The Pittsburgh tech market continues to generate new jobs, and new demand for space. In fact, Senior Research Analyst Andrew Batson noted that Google plans to open 100 to 200 positions in the coming year.

Cleveland Development Makes Headlines

Cleveland’s revitalization is far from complete, but ongoing development has generated new business, new jobs, and new interest from local residents. Cleveland was recently featured in The Atlantic Cities as a popular place for young professionals to live. East Fourth development, which includes a string of popular bars and restaurants, was specifically called out for its recent revival and growth. From The Atlantic Cities:

“Today, nearly 12,000 people live in the two square miles that make up downtown Cleveland—the largest number in 60 years—and residential occupancy rates are over 95 percent.”

Forbes listed Cleveland among 15 U.S. Cities’ Emerging Downtowns. View the slideshow for a full list (Cincinnati is included too!). Cleveland was also recently spotlighted in the Huffington Post, in which the author said that the city “is blossoming again.”

News Wrap-Up In Our Region



  • Bank of America announced that it would close its mortgage and consumer banking office in Beachwood—leaving about 1,000 without a job.
  • Skylight Financial Group will relocate its office from downtown to the United Bank Building in Ohio City. The firm’s new space will span about 18,000 square feet.


  • The largest private employer in central Ohio, JPMorgan Chase & Co., cut 300 positions locally (specifically in Columbus, Gahanna and Westerville). Downsizing also occurred in the New York office.
  • Honda Motor Co. increased its spend in Ohio by $215 million. Beyond construction at existing facilities, Honda has plans for a new 160,000 square foot office in Marysville.