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IRVINE, CA-Hanley Investment Group Real Estate Advisors has established a division called Urban Retail Advisors that will specialize in mixed-use urban retail properties and has named 17-year industry veteran Carlos J. Lopez to head the new unit. Lopez most recently served as a managing director at Reza Investment Group, also based in Irvine, where he specialized in the sale of mixed-use and urban street-front retail properties nationwide as well as traditional shopping centers.

The new division represents a response to what Edward B. Hanley, president of Hanley Investment Group, describes as a growing segment of investors who are interested in owning properties in urban and mixed-use environments. Hanley says that Lopez brings an understanding of the complex issues involved relating to land use and other factors that affect urban retail projects.

Lopez, who carries the title of president of HI Urban Retail Advisors in his new post, says that the new Hanley Investment Group division will target mixed-use and urban retail property investors and owners throughout the US. He says that the urban retail segment of the industry represents a specialized area of expertise that focuses on properties ranging from projects in well-located commercial districts to mixed-use developments and redevelopments.

Before he joined Reza Investment Group, Lopez was with the Newport Beach office of Sperry Van Ness and with Faris Lee Investments, where he concentrated on the sale of retail properties. At the time he joined Reza Investment Group in 2004, that company was intensifying its focus on mixed use, urban revitalization and lifestyle center investments.

Reza Etedali, founder of RIG, tells GlobeSt.com that his firm is now focusing its resources more on retail properties as opposed to mixed-use projects, a change of direction that has occurred within the past few months. Observing that the move should be a good fit for both Lopez and Hanley, Etedali comments, “I have known Carlos for many years. He will do well wherever he goes.”

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