Big-Box Retailers Eye Urban Sites; Potential 2010 Closings (Weekend Roundup)

One of the emerging stories in retail real estate is that healthy retailers are making moves to grab prime locations that have opened up in urban markets. This is especially true of big box players. A few years ago, cities were blocking these efforts. There were talks of legislation to block big-box construction in some places. You don't hear any of that anymore. It seems that what's worse than big-box stores in urban locations is having vacant storefronts. As a result, we'll see more of these kinds of deals take place.

For example, in Chicago Target is reportedly scoping the historic Carson Pirie Scott & Co. building on State Street as a new store. Similarly, in New York, Nordstrom, which is opening a Nordstrom Rack location in Union Square, is looking at another site on Fifth Avenue.

Here are some other news and notes about retail real estate from over the weekend.

  • 24/7 Wall Street has prepared a roundup of 35 large retail companies to see which had the largest fall-offs in same-store sales in 2009 as a way of seeing what chains might be closing stores this year.
  • Cabela's is supposed to be one of the main attractions of the Meadowlands Xanadu project in northern New Jersey. But the firm's CEO said last week that the store is "highly unlikely" to ever open. Construction on most of that project's superstructure seems to be completed. But there's no indication when--if ever--it's going to open. Amazing.
  • Sears' latest strategy to boost its sales includes ramping up its online sales efforts.
  • Seeking Alpha asks "Malls: All Bad or an Opportunity?" The post takes a look at the outlooks of several mall and outlet REITs.
  • Moody's latest look at CMBS delinquencies shows that defaults continued to rise in December.
  • Square Feet blog does a nice job explaining how real estate receivers work.
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