Corporate America is starting to open up their Tampa requirements again, and they’re needing some unique needs such as heavier parking for regular meetings and some combined office/flex scenarios. From a 30,000 foot perspective, each and every week that goes by with Vinik’s plan for downtown Tampa, more confidence grows in his plans. Wall Street Journal picked up on his plans and the word keeps reaching more and more of the “business elite” around the country. This isn’t directly affecting our industrial market locally, but it will help prop up the entire area, which ends up benefiting all of our businesses that serve the local population with trade, construction and distribution of goods.
The large industrial deals over 100k SF continue to materialize. Those groups provide goods to our growing population of consumers. The core deals between 20-50k SF that serve the trades around our economic driver of housing are still inconsistent and on a slower pace. A few household names could soon be taking large blocks of space off the market, and a couple more new names could be entering Tampa as they see expansion opportunities into this market.
Locally, a couple 60-90k SF users have sped up their decision process due to business needs locally. One is a re-distributor of goods, who hired new sales people locally, which is spurring this new user to open a new facility in our area. Another user is pursuing some steel business and potentially locating a new manufacturing facility in the Southeast U.S., and Tampa is in the running. The good news is both are new to the market and could provide true absorption of vacant space.
Lakeland / Polk County still garner most of the attention for new growth and large-scale development, but confidence could swing in East Tampa if we get a few deals done and some of the newly delivered space to the market begins seeing occupancy. The airport submarket is still tight and active with smaller users, while local private investors are searching for opportunities as added revenues come in from improving conditions in their primary lines of business.
Nationally, the Conference Board is seeing gains in their leading indicators, but the easing of that data suggests moderate expansion with weakness in the industrial sector and business investments.