(For more retail coverage, click GlobeSt.com/RETAIL.)

JACKSONVILLE, FL-Regency Centers Corp.’s chairman and CEO Hap Stein increased the REIT’s development guidance from $300 million to $400 million for 2005. He made the forecast during the REIT’s third-quarter earnings conference call.

During the quarter, the firm stabilized roughly $200 million in new developments with net operating-income yields of 11.5% and nine new developments, and started re-developments totaling $90 million. The new starts are expected to have a net operating income yield of 10.1% at completion, Stein said.

Currently, Regency has $550 million worth of projects under development and expects the fourth quarter to be “productive. Our development pipeline has never been stronger,” he contended, adding that the “shadow pipeline” is worth $1.4 billion with a yield of nearly 10%.

In an effort to focus more resources on building the pipeline, Regency recently promoted Brian Smith to chief investment officer. “We want to continue to grow our development program,” Stein said, noting that the REIT’s joint-venture initiatives will help take the program to the next level.

During the third quarter, the REIT’s FFO increased to $54.2 million, or 80 cents per diluted share, compared to $51.3 million and 82 cents per diluted share for the same period last year. Net income for the quarter was $27.6 million, or 41 cents per diluted share, compared to $35.6 million and 58 cents per diluted share for the same period last year.

The REIT, which owns 389 retail properties, posted same-store net operating income growth of 3.2% for the first nine months of the year. Moreover, the same-store rental-rate growth was 10.4%.

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