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Nine Must Reads for the CRE Industry (Feb. 22, 2021)

CBRE Group has made an investment in flexible workspace solutions provider Industrious. Bisnow looked at how developers in Texas coped with the recent crippling power outages. These are among today’s must reads from around the commercial real estate industry.

  1. CBRE Group, Inc. Acquires 35 Percent Interest in Industrious, Leading Provider of Flexible Space Solutions “The investment significantly increases CBRE’s participation in the flexible workplace sector and positions the company to meet rising demand from occupiers for agile space solutions — a trend that is being accelerated by the Covid-19 pandemic. Recent CBRE surveys show that 86% of its occupier clients, which include many of the world’s largest global corporations, plan to incorporate flex office space in their real estate strategies, and 82% will favor buildings that offer a flex-office component.” (Via press release)
  2. The Lights Are Back On But Texas CRE Still Powerless In The Face Of Multiple System Failures “Texas grapples with extreme weather events on a regular basis, and commercial developments are typically designed with resiliency in mind. But developers say that at the property level, there isn’t much they could have done to protect against the catastrophic failure of multiple systems across the entire state.” (Bisnow)
  3. How Top Real Estate Fund Managers Are Preparing for a Post-Covid World “Not many people want to buy an office building in Manhattan right now with everyone holed up in their apartments during a pandemic. Such is the dilemma for today’s real-estate investors. And nowhere is this more apparent than in real estate-focused mutual funds.” (Barron’s)
  4. Chicago’s $3.8B Bronzeville Lakefront Revamp Gets Pivotal Approval “The first phase of the Bronzeville Lakefront Project will be realized at an investment of $600 million and will involve activity on the southern end of the property. The segment will encompass the 500,000-square-foot Chicago Arc Innovation Building, which will feature Israel’s Sheeba Medical Center as its anchor, senior housing, a Bronzeville welcome center and a new park.” (Commercial Property Executive)
  5. Hurt by Lockdowns, California’s Small Businesses Push to Recall Governor “California was one of the earliest states to go into lockdown last spring, and it is now emerging from a second lockdown, which started in December. That stop-start-stop has created a groundswell of anger toward Mr. Newsom, a Democrat in the third year of his first term, that is increasingly fueling a movement to recall him from office in one of the bluest of blue states.” (The New York Times)
  6. Despite bleak real-estate market, signs of hope are building “Signs of underlying stability and renewed energy are increasingly common. Apartment sales are up, especially in Brooklyn. Stimulated by reduced rents, more Manhattan rental leases were signed in December than for the month in a dozen years, according to Douglas Elliman and analyst Jonathan Miller — although vacant units remain at a near all-time high.” (New York Post)
  7. PropTech SPACs: Not Just For The Rich And Famous “Innovation will play a key role in determining how our world evolves. By focusing on PropTech, investors may earn high returns through new, transformational real estate technologies. For investors in REITs, those seeking to outperform REIT indexes may consider adding names in PropTech to their portfolio.” (Seeking Alpha)
  8. Are Europe's real estate markets bracing for a sell-off? “Developers have noticed an emerging trend that indicates a strong preference for larger homes as many shift to remote work. Buyers are now increasingly asking for homes and apartments with separate quiet rooms or fully equipped studies.” (PropertyInvestorToday)
  9. Cost of flood damage to U.S. homes will increase by 61% in 30 years “Roughly 4.3 million homes - concentrated in Florida, California, South Carolina and Texas - have a substantial risk of sustaining economic damage from flooding this year, the report shows. The majority are not required by the U.S. government to have flood insurance. Were all of them to buy federal insurance, National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) rates would need to increase 4.5 times to cover the risk, according to the report. The current average NFIP premium for these 4.3 million homes is $981.” (Thomson Reuters)
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