Repurposing Retail Centers: Profiles in Adaptation, Repositioning and Redevelopment

Posted on January 21, 2020

By Jason Beske, AICP

The declining prospects of North America’s shopping malls have been the subject of significant media attention, industry concern and public interest. Faced with competition from e-commerce and shifting consumer preferences for other retail formats and experiences, hundreds of traditional shopping malls have closed in recent decades, with many more closures expected in the coming years. The NAIOP Research Foundation commissioned this report to examine how developers are transforming struggling or closed malls into properties that fit within current market conditions and serve the needs of their surrounding communities.

Once able to attract consumers by offering a range of retail options in a single location, traditional malls have struggled to compete with other retail formats in recent years. Many anchor stores and smaller mall-based retailers have gone out of business due to competition from online and budget retailers. Although certain upscale malls located in dense and growing metropolitan areas continue to attract customers, Class B and C retail centers have struggled to remain open.

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NAIOP Charlotte Elects 2020 Board of Directors and Recognizes the Award of Excellence Winner at 2019 Annual Meeting

NAIOP Charlotte, the Commercial Real Estate Development Association, held its annual meeting on Wednesday, December 18, 2019, at the Charlotte City Club, where they elected the 2020 Board of Directors and announced the winner of their Award of Excellence. This award recognizes an individual who positively influences our community and industry. ­­­­Attendees also heard from Ron Kaufman, RNC National Committee; John Lassiter, Charlotte 2020 Host Committee; and Walter Price, Moore & Van Allen on the Republican National Convention coming to Charlotte in 2020 and its impact on the city’s economy.

Click Here for the Press Release
Click Here to View Event Photos

2020 Board of Directors

President – Scott Harris, Choate Construction
President-Elect – Patrick Pierce, Selwyn Properties Secretary – Jason Moore, Rodgers Builders
Treasurer – Welch Lyles, Asana Partners
Immediate Past President – Tracy Dodson, City of Charlotte
Past President – Cheryl Steele, Offit Kurman, P.A.
*For a full list of the 2020 NAIOP Board of Directors, visit our website at

Award of Excellence

The Award of Excellence was given to Jason Moore of Rodgers Builders, Inc. The award is presented to an individual that dutifully gives time and energy to a focused non-profit organization or community cause and humbly serves others in the community without concern for recognition or compensation. He or she champions the commercial real estate industry on a national, state and/or local level and passionately seeks to be an agent for change, even in the face of diversity. This person is seen as a real estate industry ambassador at any level of government or community.

Photo (L-R): 2019 NAIOP Charlotte President Tracy Dodson, City of Charlotte, and incoming 2020 NAIOP Charlotte President, Scott Harris, Choate Construction Company

Placemaking Grant Applications for 2020

Published on January 15, 2020.

The City of Charlotte’s Placemaking Program launched in 2018 with the mission of using urban design and placemaking to transform underutilized public spaces into vibrant places for people. The Urban Design Center in the City of Charlotte’s Planning, Design, and Development department is leading the effort with their own projects while creating opportunities for neighborhoods to use placemaking to promote community collaboration and accomplish public space goals.

The City of Charlotte Placemaking Program is opening up a new round of Placemaking Grants for 2020. The application will be available on December 30th and be due on March 6th. Please visit our Placemaking Grant page for the guide, application, and other important details.

​Check each project below to see how the City of Charlotte is using placemaking to create more vibrant and well-loved community spaces! A multi-departmental team led by the Urban Design Center has made placemaking more accessible through Placemaking Hub processes and Placemaking Grants for neighborhoods, and a Placemaking Artist program for local artists.

Learn More Here

Charlotte Land Development Standards Manual (CLDSM) Update

Posted on January 14, 2020

The Charlotte Land Development Standards Committee has determined that various details in the CLDSM need to be revised or added as Revision No. 19 of the CLDSM. DRAFT updated details are available on the CLDSM website at in a PDF marked up with revision clouds and revision notes. The projected effective date for the updated details and Revision No. 19 of the CLDSM will be January 27th, 2020. Please review the DRAFT details and provide any feedback or comments to Brendan Smith at [email protected] by January 15th, 2020.

Save The Date: REBIC Public Policy Forum

Posted on December 30, 2019

Save the date for the 2019 REBIC Public Policy Forum with guest speaker Michael Stegman, author of the white paper "Eliminating Exclusionary Zoning Should be the Civil Rights Issue of Our Time."

February 6th, 2020
1:30 - 3:00PM
UNC Charlotte Center City Auditorium

Register Now

The Forces Shaping Office Space Demand Webinar

Posted on November 26, 2019

Get the inside track on upcoming opportunities in the office sector in this member-only webinar on Dec. 17, 2-3 p.m. EST. This webinar will provide insights and data from the latest NAIOP Office Space Demand Forecast, and identify linkages between overall economic activity and the demand for office real estate.

Learn More & Register Here

New Report: Office Leasing Activity to Sustain Momentum as US Economic Expansion Continues

Posted on December 6, 2019

The NAIOP Research Foundation has published the NAIOP Office Space Demand Forecast for Q4 2019.

Key Takeaways:

  • The U.S. office market continues to perform as expected, with an average of 14.7 million square feet absorbed per quarter in 2019.
  • The forecast for the remainder of 2019 and 2020 remains strong at an average of 13.2 million square feet absorbed per quarter in 2020 and 12.7 million square feet per quarter in 2021.
  • At present, the economy – and thus the office markets – are expected to remain in an upcycle for at least the next 18 months.
  • The effects of the WeWork situation are likely to be isolated to a small set of markets and will not broadly impact the national office market. The company's inability to expand may generate more demand for direct leases in some markets, but overall, coworking appears to be a long-term trend, and the forecast will likely resist any short-term impacts caused by WeWork's recent troubles.

Firms might slow their expansion plans in 2020, reducing the need for new office space, in reaction to overall fears of a slowdown. Still, most measures of consumer health, including wage growth, job growth and consumption expenditures, remain strong.

View the Report

The Suburban Office Park, an Aging Relic, Seeks a Comeback

Posted on November 25, 2019


When Research Triangle Park in North Carolina opened in 1959, its bucolic setting was considered a major selling point. With office buildings hidden behind grassy meadows and swaths of pine forest, the quiet development was viewed as a perfect spot for the thinkers who went to work at companies like IBM and RTI International.

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City of Charlotte Upcoming Stakeholder and Committee Meetings

Posted on November 22, 2019

DEVELOPMENT SERVICES TECHNICAL ADVISORY (DSTAC) COMMITTEE: Meetings are held on the fourth Wednesday of each month on the 8th floor in Planning's Innovation Station, Charlotte Mecklenburg Government Center (600 East Fourth Street, Charlotte, NC) from 1:00 pm to 2:30 pm.

STORM WATER ADVISORY COMMISSION (SWAC) MEETING: Meetings are typically held on the third Thursday of each month at 4:30 pm at the Mecklenburg County Offices at 2145 Suttle Avenue, Charlotte, NC.

TREE ADVISORY COMMISSION: Meetings are typically held on the third Tuesday of every month at the Charlotte Mecklenburg Government Center (600 East Fourth Street, Charlotte, NC) beginning at 5:00 pm.

Terrorism Risk Insurance Program Clears Key House Committee

Posted on November 18, 2019

Last week, the House Committee on Financial Services unanimously (57-0) passed a bipartisan bill that would extend the Terrorism Risk Insurance Program (TRIA) for seven years. The reauthorization of TRIA the can now move to the floor of the full House of Representatives.

The bill, H.R. 4634, would also require a study on the cyberterrorism market and expand an ongoing study to determine the availability and affordability of TRIA coverage for places of worship. In the Senate, Republican Thom Tillis of North Carolina is reportedly working to introduce a reauthorization bill as well. The current bill expires next year.

In order to guarantee that insurance coverage would be available for the commercial real estate industry, Congress first passed the Terrorism Risk Insurance Act of 2002. It created a federal reinsurance backstop program for terrorism insurance, and mandated that insurers make terrorism coverage available along with their property and casualty lines of insurance. Congress has already extended TRIA three times.

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New: Fall 2019 Sentiment Index

Posted on November 15, 2019

About The NAIOP CRE Sentiment Index

The NAIOP Sentiment Index is designed to predict general conditions in the commercial real estate industry over the next 12 months. The forecast is not based on an analysis of historical data, but rather it represents a look into the future by real estate developers, investors, operators and brokers. These NAIOP members are asked to respond to questions based on their ongoing work, including projects in their pipelines. For more information, see Understanding the Index.

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Retail is Alive and Well. It Just Looks Different.

Posted on November 14, 2019

By Trey Barrineau

Retail apocalypse? What retail apocalypse?

Yes, there have been significant changes in the retail space in recent years, said Amy Sands, managing director with JLL during “The Latest Trends in Retail,” a panel discussion at CRE.Converge 2019 in Los Angeles. However, she said “apocalypse” is an overblown term for what might properly be called “an experiential revolution.”

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Despite a Cannabis Boom, Real Estate and Banking Challenges Remain

Posted on November 13, 2019

By Jonathan Havens and Anamika Roy

Conflicting local and federal laws, along with NIMBYism, could be slowing investment in marijuana-related facilities.

At last count, 33 states have authorized cannabis for medical use, with 11 also permitting recreational use. Recent public opinion surveys suggest historically high support for continued and expanded cannabis access. For example, a March 2019 Quinnipiac University poll found that American voters believe, almost two to one, that “the use of [all] marijuana should be made legal in the U.S.” Support for medical access comes in even higher, at more than 18 to one, if a doctor recommends it.

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Webinar Nov. 19: Legislative and Political Update

Posted on November 12, 2019

The Advantage Series is an exclusive member benefit, delivering expert insights into the latest research to help you make informed business decisions.

This webinar will provide members with an update on federal legislative activity and executive agency actions affecting the commercial real estate industry, with a specific focus on NAIOP’s top public policy and legislative priorities.  Aquiles Suarez, NAIOP’s vice president for government affairs, and Alex Ford, NAIOP director of federal affairs, will discuss issues including tax legislation, infrastructure, environmental issues and federal regulatory matters.  Attendees can pose questions regarding federal issues affecting their business and gain insights to prepare them for any future regulatory or legislative challenges.

Register Now

2019 REBIC Voter Guide

Posted on October 31, 2019

The Real Estate & Building Industry Coalition (REBIC) has published their 2019 Voter Guide for the General Elections of Mecklenburg and Iredell Counties.  You can access the Voter Guide on REBIC's blog "The Loop" and here.

Charlotte Sign & Tree Ordinance Updates Approved

Posted on October 29, 2019

On October 21 Charlotte City Council voted to approve updates to the sign and tree ordinances. Most importantly, the updated tree ordinance allows for more flexibility for developers on urban sites in the City, which is less than 5% of Charlotte’s total developable land.

REBIC sent a letter to the Council urging their support, and we would like to thank those who voted in the affirmative: Mayor Pro Tem Julie Eiselt, Councilman Braxton Winston, Councilman James Mitchell, Councilman Larken Egleston, Councilman Greg Phipps, Councilwoman LaWana Mayfield, Councilman Justin Harlow, Councilman Tariq Bokhari and Councilman Ed Driggs. We would also like to thank Mayor Vi Lyles for her leadership and ability to support council through contentious discussions in a judicious manner.

Thank you to our members who personally reached out to Council Members as well!

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Surveys Provide Opportunity to Give Feedback to Planning Staff

Posted on October 25, 2019

City of Charlotte Development Center Customer

The City of Charlotte Development Center is committed to continuous improvement in order to be the best partner with our customers to efficiently, effectively and collaboratively build a safe and thriving community.

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2020 NAIOP Charlotte Cornerstone Sponsorships are Available!

The Cornerstone Sponsorship program offers professionals and organizations an opportunity to participate in, and get more out of, our chapter activities and services. The Cornerstone Sponsorship program is an excellent way to gain visibility while supporting the commercial real estate industry in Charlotte. 

Cornerstone Sponsors are allowed to customize your benefits based on the exposure you desire.

Learn More or Commit Today

Tree Ordinance Text Amendment Passes

Posted on October 22, 2019

Last night (10/21) Charlotte City Council voted to approve updates to the sign and tree ordinances. NAIOP Charlotte supported the proposed text amendments to the Tree Ordinance below:

On behalf of the hundreds of commercial real estate developers and industry service providers represented by NAIOP Charlotte, we request your support of the proposed amendment to the City’s Tree Ordinance Amendment at the City Council business meeting on Monday, October 21st.

Petition #2019‐104 seeks to codify flexibility, better integrate trees into urban sites, and will result in no net loss of ordinance required trees. It incentivizes urban development and redevelopment to plant trees on site, compared with the current practice of payment in lieu which pushes our canopy out of urban areas where benefits from sustainable practices can be leveraged. It places trees in areas where people want to congregate, socialize, and enjoy open space. Current requirements are restrictive of where trees can be located. 

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Making Multistory Industrial Work

Posted on October 10, 2019

By Kathryn Hamilton

E-commerce is driving growth in neighborhoods where malls used to stand tall, and multistory is the name of the game in industrial development today. In Brooklyn, an 18-acre site in the Red Hook district will be the future home to a four-story, 1.3-million-square-foot distribution center – the largest multistory warehouse in the U.S. It’s groundbreaking in its scope and design, but not without its own issues. So what are the challenges with multistory and how can developers make it work? A panel at NAIOP’s I.CON East 2019 sought to answer the tough questions.

Leslie Lanne, managing director with JLL, said the primary driver behind multistory is getting as close as possible to the consumer base. This proximity is more than just mileage – it’s the time it takes to get the goods to the consumer. For example, a warehouse in New Jersey is located only five miles from Brooklyn, but it can be tough to achieve a trip from the warehouse to consumers and back in less than two hours.

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