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DETROIT-According to Q1 statistics put out by CB Richard Ellis, the industrial market in Detroit is suffering. The automotive industry is largely to blame. The report was issued by CBRE’s Mike Gerard and John Latessa.

At the end of Q1, the industrial market charted an availability rate of 13.8%, a 40 basis point increase from Q4 2008 and a 140 basis point increase from the year before. This percentage is a 10-year high in the area. Availability rose in every single submarket in the industry. Oakland Country experienced the greatest increase, while Downriver was the most stable.

As automobile demand dropped to a 25 year low, Detroit’s industrial market watched the rapid consolidation of the automotive industry. As a result, the government looked to alternative companies to fill the vacant properties, attempting to attract alternative energy and life science companies.

Still not every figure was negative. The sales and leasing activity was nearly the same as Q4 2008. More than 3.4 million square feet of space traded hands this quarter. But Latessa and Gerard note that the majority of the leases were short-term totaling three years or less.

Asking lease rates continued to feel the downward pressure as in 2008. The estimated asking lease rate is now $5.25 per square foot at compared to a high point in Q1 2007 when asking rates topped $5.50 per square foot.

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