HOUSTON – The northeast industrial submarket broke records in first quarter 2019, delivering 438,000 sf, with an additional 835,200 sf—the second-largest amount during a quarter—under construction. According to NAI Partners, the market contains 37 million sf of inventory. Vacancies have been gradually rising due in part to new inventory delivering with vacant space. Click to read more at www.recenter.tamu.edu.
The 37-acre biomedical research campus planned for the Texas Medical Center has been redesigned, a move officials said would better cultivate a “live, work and play” atmosphere combining collaborative research facilities with shops, restaurants, residences and offices peppered with parks and plazas. The new design, from Boston-based Elkus Manfredi Architects, builds on an earlier plan to develop a sprawling research building resembling a double helix — a nod to the scientific description of a strand of DNA — capped with an elevated park with gardens and trails. “In the previous scheme, the DNA strand was really the building. Now the DNA strand is really the spaces between the buildings,” said David Manfredi, chief executive of Elkus Manfredi. “Instead of mapping the building on a DNA strand, we’re using that icon or that image or emblem as a way to define outdoor spaces.” Click to read more at www.chron.com.
Hartman Income REIT has purchased Ashford on the Bayou, a five-story office building in west Houston near the Energy Corridor. Built in 1983, the renovated property is 55 percent leased. HFF marketed the property for the seller, Los Angeles-based RPD Catalyst, and arranged a five-year, fixed-rate acquisition loan with RGA Reinsurance Co. for the buyer. Terms were not disclosed. The 126,811-square-foot building is situated on 2.5 acres at 1001 S. Dairy Ashford, south of Buffalo Bayou. The property has an attached seven-story, 467-space parking garage and borders Terry Hershey Park. Click to read more at www.houstonchronicle.com.
During Q1 2019, top leasing transactions totaled 36% more square feet than Q1 2018. This activity was concentrated in the CBD (31%), Energy Corridor (30%), North Houston (22%), and West Loop / Galleria (14%). 87% of tenants leased Class A properties. While no office space was delivered during Q1 2019, the construction pipeline added Park Place River Oaks, a 207,000 sq. ft. office tower in the West Loop / Galleria submarket. Total space under construction increased to 2.4 million sq. ft. Click to read more at www.cbre.us.
Houston’s economy showed signs of growth in recent months as oil and gas-related employment grew and bank lending significantly outpaced growth in Texas and the United States. Trends in the Houston economy remained positive in the three months ending in February, according to the latest Houston business-cycle index by the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas, which analyzes economic indicators, such as job growth and oil and fuel prices. Click to read more at www.houstonchronicle.com.
Houston has been making headway following the economic slowdown, and—while the metro’s office market is far from healthy—signs point toward a strengthening economy. As an economy deeply rooted in energy, Houston is taking steps toward diversifying. As the fourth-largest metro in the U.S., Houston has a business-friendly climate and affordable cost of living that continue to be significant draws for companies and residents alike. The metro had 716,000 office-using jobs as of October, with professional and business services leading growth, having added 30,600 jobs in the 12 months ending in October. Click to read more at www.cpexecutive.com.