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|Thursday, May 01, 2008|
PORTLAND Downtown construction continues to push up retail vacancy rates as prospective retailers wait for completion of the disruptive activity. Vacancy rates downtown rose to 7.3% in the first quarter of this year, up from 5.1% the same time last year, according to Portland-based real estate firm Norris, Beggs & Simpson. A sluggish economy and tight credit for new construction projects also are to blame, says J.J. Unger, a broker with the company. “We have definitely seen the activity slow down,” says Unger. “People are sitting on the sidelines.”
One example is the 15,000-square-foot space that had housed a Kitchen Kaboodle. It’s been vacant since last summer, stymied by construction of the new transit mall on SW Sixth Avenue, which began in January 2007. The vacancy rate in fourth quarter 2006 was 4.4%, according to Norris, Beggs., and has since steadily climbed. “Everybody is waiting for it to be finished,” says Unger. The project is scheduled for completion in spring 2009.
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Is your business ready to join us in the call for action? This opening panel includes Oregon businesses who will discuss why they signed the Oregon Climate Declaration, the investments they are making to reduce carbon emissions, and how their actions are affecting their companies.
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The official launch will be Jan. 14.
In a switch on the traditional trade show, representatives from UO departments and local and state agencies will host tables to connect with businesses and vendors. The fourth Reverse Vendor Fair will take place Wednesday, Feb. 25, in Eugene.