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ORLANDO-The metro area’s 117-building, 14-million-sf bulk warehouse market continues its steady absorption pace with 190,992 sf of vacant space leased in the second quarter, according to a new analysis by Winter Park-based Rebman Properties Inc. First-half total net absorption was 419,214 sf.

Vacancy of 6.42% is at a three-year low. In second quarter 2003, for example, vacancy in 13.5 million sf of existing space totaled 16.56%, the highest in the last 14 quarters. Vacancy started improving in third quarter 2004 with a 9.58% level, dropping to 6.89% in fourth quarter 2004 but rising to 7.78% in first quarter 2005.

“There were no large leases in the quarter but very few exits or contractions by tenants either,” notes Greg Rebman, vice president of Rebman Properties which has tracked the bulk warehouse market in metro Orlando for the past 14 years. “This trend of few leases but even fewer tenants exiting or downsizing has continued for the past four quarters. As a result, the leasing market has not been highly active, but has lead to the tightest supply during the past 15 years.”

The largest leases of the quarter were 58,700 sf to Fisher & Paykel and 51,700 sf to APX Logistics, both in Crownpointe Three, and the expansion of 48,000 sf by Ryder Corp. in Crownpointe Two.

Rebman statistics show only 905,000 sf of bulk warehouse space is available for lease. That volume compares to 1.09 million sf available in the first quarter. No new product was under construction in the second quarter and only 379,559 sf of new space was added in the entire first half. Rebman is projecting total net absorption for this year at one million sf.

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