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Phil Voorhees Voorhees: “Feature restaurants from North Italia and the Hillstone concepts to collections of small concepts like Blaze Pizza, the Habit Burger and Panda Express all generate remarkable sales per square foot, attracting routine customer traffic to projects.”

IRVINE, CA—It may sound cliché, but it’s nonetheless true: the new collection of small restaurant concepts generates remarkable sales per square foot, attracting routine customer traffic to projects, CBRE EVP Philip Voorhees tells GlobeSt.com. In this retail roundup, we spoke with Voorhees and other retail experts about the prospects they see for the future of this sector, and several mentioned food concepts and restaurants as gaining strength. (For a more in-depth view of the retail sector, see the Annual Retail Review in the May issue of Real Estate Forum.)

According to Howard Wong, managing director of retail for Passco Cos., we will continue to see an increase in the rise of unique concepts and independent retailers, among these are the food retailers. “The rise in food retail will continue to grow over the next several years. In fact, we’ve already seen this trend start to take form in centers throughout the country,” he tells GlobeSt.com. Previously, restaurants would typically account for approximately 10% to 20% of a retail center. Today, they make up approximately 30% to 40%. “Consumers today are demanding experience-driven environments and unique centers that emulate the latest in exciting new restaurants and fast-casual food options.”

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Carrie Rossenfeld

Carrie Rossenfeld is a reporter for the San Diego and Orange County markets on GlobeSt.com and a contributor to Real Estate Forum. She was a trade-magazine and newsletter editor in New York City before moving to Southern California to become a freelance writer and editor for magazines, books and websites. Rossenfeld has written extensively on topics including commercial real estate, running a medical practice, intellectual-property licensing and giftware. She has edited books about profiting from real estate and has ghostwritten a book about starting a home-based business.

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