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Resilience, Growth in Cedar Rapids is Unparalleled

By Scott Olson, Skogman Commercial On Aug. 10, 2020, eastern Iowa was hit with a derecho. This is the Spanish word for a widespread, long-lived, straight-line windstorm that is associated with a fast-moving group of several thunderstorms. Winds in southwest Cedar Rapids were estimated to be 140 miles per hour with the entire city of 75 square miles sustaining major damage. The statistics are staggering: • Cedar Rapids lost 669,000 mature trees, about 70 percent of its urban canopy. The …

Des Moines Office Market Is on the Rebound

By Chris Curran and Mark Mills, R&R Realty Advisors Would you rather earn more money or have a more flexible work/life balance? Before the pandemic, many employees gave the latter as their answer. But the amount of money employees claimed they would forego wasn’t exactly peanuts. According to a pre-pandemic study by career site Joblist, the average employee was willing to give up around $10,000 per year to have better work/life balance.  Fast forward to the present day and employees …

Greater Des Moines Retail Market Is on Track for Fast Recovery

By Christopher Stafford, Cushman & Wakefield The Greater Des Moines retail market continues to emerge from the pandemic and is quickly regaining its footing from the closures and challenges experienced by many retailers, restaurants and businesses alike. Despite a few setbacks, occupancy rates and rents have generally held steady.  Consumer spending is surging and according to a WalletHub study, Iowa’s COVID-19 recovery is the quickest in the nation, earning a total score of 75.25 out …

Investors Shift Focus from Higher Returns to Stability, Proven Cash Flow

By Tyler Dingel and Blake Bogenrief, CBRE | Hubbell Commercial COVID-19, and the immediate uncertainty that came with it, slowed investment activity in nearly all markets. The transactions that have closed since March, and those that will follow in the coming months, are changing. Investors and lenders alike are more thorough in upfront analysis, more selective in tenants, and overall, trending more conservative. The vision is now long-term oriented, and the spotlight is shining brightly on …

Cedar Rapids Shows Resilience, Growth in Times of Crisis

By Scott Olson, Skogman Commercial Since starting a series of annual articles on Cedar Rapids in 2013 after the recovery from the historic floods of 2008 and 2016, I never anticipated the city would be facing an event in 2020 that would reach beyond those levels of flood impact. Now, the COVID-19 pandemic has given our city new challenges for this year and beyond. Hopefully this is a once-in-a-lifetime health event that, unlike the floods, has impacted nearly every city in the country in many …

Downtown Sioux City Experiencing Explosive Growth, Transformation

By Marty Dougherty, City of Sioux City Downtown Sioux City, Iowa is currently experiencing growth and transformation on an unprecedented scale. This emerging and vibrant place is not only celebrating its rich and colorful history with multiple historic property renovations, but has made strides to re-invent itself and take the downtown to new levels. These efforts include the growth of new residential options, an increasing number of cultural attractions and quality-of-life amenities, new …

Flood of Development Activity Continues in Cedar Rapids

As I have enjoyed writing in six previous August articles since 2013, we have seen Cedar Rapids, the 2014 “All-America City,” go from flood recovery in 2008 and 2016 to record levels of development. The city set a record for building permits in fiscal year 2018 of $375 million, which was $133 million over the previous year and $29 million more than the 2012 record by $29 million. Activity in fiscal year 2019 is estimated to be a very impressive $320 million. Flood protection system reached …

Office Amenities Drive Tenant Decisions in Des Moines Market

In the last few years, the greater Des Moines metro area has been a title holder, reigning as a “Top Place to Live,” “Top City for Young Professionals” and even “Best Place to Retire.” Meanwhile the economy, business environment and commercial real estate sector hold titles like steady, stable and reliable.  However, over the past 24 months, the commercial office market could add thriving, prosperous and robust to that list of adjectives. As office lease rates continue to rise 1.5 …

Development Activity in Cedar Rapids Abounds Across Property Sectors

In a series of citywide events on June 13, the city of Cedar Rapids celebrated the recovery efforts from the historic flood of 2008 that crested that day 10 years ago. The events also remembered those that lost so much in the residential and business community. Many are still impacted by this natural disaster. As I have previously noted in past articles, the city’s recovery efforts have been nationally recognized, including:• All-America City Award in 2014 from the National Civic …

Outlets of Des Moines Fills a Retail Void in the Metro Area

Outlets of Des Moines brings some of the best brand names in retail to the Des Moines metropolitan area, one of the strongest economies in the country. Retailers include such favorites as American Eagle, Asics, Bath & Body Works, Brooks Brothers, Converse, Express Factory Outlet, francesca’s, Le Creuset, Levi’s, LOFT Outlet, Lucky Brand Jeans, Michael Kors, Nike Factory Store, Skechers, Tommy Hilfiger, Vera Bradley and Under Armour. [caption id="attachment_204673" align="alignright" …

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