RECon More Upbeat Than Recent Past
We’ve been talking to a lot of people so far at RECon, and besides the lack of new development out there, everyone seems positive about the state of the retail real estate sector nowadays.
The lack of new development isn’t even the case for some companies. Taubman Centers COO William Taubman showed us some projects his firm is working on, and it has new developments in Puerto Rico; the St. Louis area; Sarasota, FL; and a few other locales. He told us that the main secret to getting these plans off the ground is that his people were still trying to get development projects done when the recession was in full swing.
Discounter Tuesday Morning is mainly going into second-generation space, but their store-opening plans are pretty geared up. They are opening 75 stores a year for the next two years, Cory Bird, the chain’s director of real estate, told me.
“It feels more like 2008 this year,” observed Whitney Livingston, vice president of management and marketing services at Madison Marquette, which got a bigger booth this year. She said that she has appointments scheduled every 30 mintues this year from the show’s opening until 6 p.m.
Meanwhile, traffic seems pretty strong in the Central Hall, where we are spending most of our time today. Another indicator: There are plenty of parties taking place in the evening, which is evidence that retail real estate firms are less shy about spending money.