Birmingham’s Apartment Market Feeds Off Downtown’s Renaissance

Birmingham’s renaissance has been underway for several years now, but it has taken some time for the rest of the world to find out. This year they started paying attention.The opening of Railroad Park, Regions Field, the Iron City event venue and now the recently restored Lyric Theatre have made it clear that there are intriguing things going on in downtown Birmingham. Lonely Planet, the respected travel information source, included Birmingham in its “2016 Best in the U.S.” list, …

Birmingham’s Retail Market Bolstered by New Grocers, Mixed-Use Projects

[caption id="attachment_131315" align="alignright" width="100"] Rodney Barstein, Retail Specialists LLC[/caption][caption id="attachment_131316" align="alignright" width="100"] Robert Jolly, Retail Specialists LLC[/caption]Birmingham’s retail market remained steady in 2014, with approximately 10 percent of the total 24 million square feet available for lease. Birmingham is tracking above national averages relative to new ground-up and rehab projects that are announced or underway. Downward …

Birmingham’s Newest Multifamily Product Will Act as a Litmus Test for the Market

[caption id="attachment_130784" align="alignright" width="100"] Chad Thomas Hagwood, Capital One Multifamily Finance[/caption]Spring has come to Birmingham, and with it the sound of multifamily developers breaking ground. Their success in finding tenants for these properties — numbering more than 1,000 units — will be a litmus test for the future of the Birmingham market. Right now, the market activity leads one to be cautiously optimistic.Work on the $66 million renovation of the …

Birmingham Enjoys Improving Fundamentals, In-Town Shift

Birmingham was recently ranked among the “Top 10 Emerging Downtowns in the Country” by, and the city has also become an attractive place for national investors. The Birmingham apartment market has shown stable occupancy of 93 percent and experienced gains in effective rents, despite 540 units being delivered in 2013. Construction of new communities is ramping up as projects delivered in 2012 and 2013 such as The Hill, Tapestry Park, Village at Lakeshore Crossing and …

Apartment Demand Picks Up in Birmingham As Unemployment Rate Drops

Birmingham — Alabama's largest apartment market — is in the midst of a continued recovery from the economic downturn. The city posted a net-gain in jobs, occupancy and rental rates, which has helped spur new development, particularly at close-in urban locations. Last year was a turnaround year for Birmingham. The city gained 700 jobs and the Birmingham-Hoover unemployment rate dropped to 5.8 percent by December, two percentage points below the national average, according to …

Competition is Fierce for Prime Retail Space in Suburban Birmingham

In the decade between 1997-2007, a massive amount of retail development swept the country, and Birmingham — like much of the Southeast — was considered a demographic sweet spot. During this 10-year period, the majority of the population was at a peak buying age, the economy was performing well and most of the population was experiencing higher income levels. In Alabama, developers and retailers alike scrambled to keep up with the growth by building new shopping centers anchored by …

The city of perpetual optimism.

The city of Huntsville, Alabama, is no stranger to threats of economic disaster, so overcoming it is a matter of pulling together a team of commercial brokers and economic development professionals who will see office and industrial buildings half-full, rather than half-empty. In 1948, the U.S. Army hung a ‘For Sale’ sign on Redstone Arsenal, only to remove it for a team of rocket scientists. In the 1970s, Huntsville’s space industry packed its bags after the last Apollo …

Deals still getting done in slow market.

Sonny Culp of Birmingham-based Graham & Co. looks at the Birmingham industrial market through an optimist’s glasses. While the recession has slowed activity significantly — Culp estimates that the bulk distribution vacancy rate is somewhere around 20 percent — transactions are still taking place. And on the bright side, at least the current development standstill means Birmingham won’t have tons of warehouse space sitting empty for the next few months. “The economy …

State government provides boost.

Montgomery’s commercial real estate industry is repaving the rocky road of the recession. The small capital city is fairing well, fueled by the state government, the Maxwell-Gunter Air Force Base and the car manufacturer Hyundai. Montgomery’s transportation options also make the area attractive; two major highways intersect in the city, and the Alabama River provides a shipping alternative for sea-fairing businesses. According to Jerome Moore of Montgomery-based Moore Company …

Birmingham's fundamentals help fuel solid economic base.

The University of Alabama at Birmingham continues to be the most powerful and stable economic engine in North Central Alabama. The university offers the community high-paying jobs as both faculty and staff employees and an affordable and beneficial educational opportunity, while drawing patients and visitors to its world-class medical center from throughout the region, and in many instances, from all over the globe. Approximately 12 years ago, Alabama embarked on a program to entice …

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