CREJ - page 1

by Michelle Z. Askeland
Despite national headlines of store
closure and, locally, the bankruptcy of
Sports Authority, the Denver retail real
estate market has been largely unaf-
fected.What’s more, even with the
potential 600,000 square feet of vacant
space coming back on the market
from Sports Authority locations, many
in retail real estate – landlords, own-
ers, investors and tenants – could ben-
efit from new opportunities.
“Sports Authority closures will not
have a significant impact on the Den-
ver metro retail real estate market, in
my opinion,” said Mary Beth Jenkins,
president of The Laramie Co. “This is
not a real estate issue, this is a busi-
ness issue. They failed because they
couldn’t compete. It’s not because we
have an issue with our demographics.
We are an outdoor wonderland, and
sports stores should be able to survive
Overall, the Denver retail market is
enjoying strong net absorption, with
397,878 sf absorbed in the second
quarter, up from 259,717 sf in the
first quarter, according to research
from Cushman &Wakefield’s 2016 Q1
“Even with the big-box closures, the
general vacancy rate of retail product
in Denver continues to decline,” said
Jon D. Hendrickson, managing direc-
tor of capital markets with Cushman
&Wakefield. In the second quarter,
overall vacancy was 7.1 percent –
down from 7.3 percent in the first
quarter and 0.5 percent lower than
the U.S. major markets average of 7.6
percent, he said.
Other telling indicators include the
city’s strong demographics, limited
new supply and demand for Class A
product. However, retailers are being
methodical in the way they process
new sites and are requiring more cri-
teria before entering into negotiations,
said Scott Crosbie, partner at Crosbie
Real Estate Group LLC.With construc-
tion costs and higher taxes, tenants
are more conservative with their esti-
mates and sale volume projections,
which is affecting B and C sites and
causing some to sit vacant or be over-
looked all together, he said.
In a tight market, vacant spaces in desirable locations will move quickly. Murdoch’s Ranch and Home Supply is one of the most active retailers for these large spaces.
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