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TEANECK, NJ-A panel of six top real estate executives is set to place an agenda of highly charged issues squarely on the table at the opening Town Hall Meeting at the annual RealShare New Jersey conference tomorrow morning. The meeting is expected to draw more than 600 to the Glenpointe Marriott here, and the Town Hall Meeting figures to set the tone for what will be a lively and informative day.

“I want to talk about all the traffic, with Xanadu and the new football stadium being built in the Meadowlands,” Charles Klatskin, chairman and CEO of Lee & Klatskin, tells GlobeSt.com. “I want to also talk about all of the political corruption and what it means for the state’s reputation. And about the tax system and why it doesn’t work. And I want to talk about why we should raise the gas tax.”

“One issue is the whole matter of doing business in New Jersey–is it a downer?” asks Michael Alfieri, president of the M. Alfieri Co., citing the regulatory process. “The rate of change has slowed down, and DOT is an issue.”

“In terms of incentives, what’s the [Gov. Jon] Corzine administration doing?” asks Ray Sohmer, senior managing director for CB Richard Ellis. “Is the state business-friendly? Is it too expensive? What do major corporations think? Incentives play a huge role, and is the state stepping up?”

“The state of the economy correlates to the performance of commercial real estate,” adds Gil Medina, executive managing director for Cushman & Wakefield of NJ. “I think we have to discuss everything from the sub-prime market, to the impact of New York as a driver for the New Jersey market.”

“Rents have tripled in New York City, and vacancies are very low,” Sohmer says. “Will we start moving companies to New Jersey, to the Hudson River waterfront or further?”

“We haven’t really felt the impact of the New York office market,” Alfieri tells GlobeSt.com. “But we’re starting to feel it. In the meantime, the industrial market has exploded, with five million sf of spec space following tremendous absorption in the past several years. Will the industrial market stay robust?”

And the industrial landscape has changed, explains Peter Sudler, president of the Sudler Cos. “Manufacturing has disappeared,” he says, repeating some of the competitiveness issues cited by other panelists.

“Since deal velocity has slowed tremendously following the capital market upheaval, what kinds of transactions are being executed in New Jersey?” asks Michael Fasano, regional manager for Marcus & Millichap. “What’s the long-term forecast for the market?”

The long-term forecast figures to be the endgame of this year’s Town Hall Meeting panel. The RealShare Conference Series is produced by Real Estate Media, publishers of GlobeSt.com Real Estate New Jersey and Real Estate Forum.

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