Looking for Land? Try Auto Lots

CoStar explores a building trend--the growing volume of vacant auto dealerships is creating a potential supply of developable land.

It appears that vacant auto dealerships may soon join obsolete enclosed malls and the growing inventory of empty big-box stores on the list of former robust retail properties in need of an alternative use.

Already at overcapacity, automakers have been trying to reduce the number of dealerships for years with mixed success. The recession will likely do what the automakers could not -- bring the number of dealerships in line with demand. President Obama's call for more extreme turnaround measures for both General Motors and Chrysler is only expected to add to the number of un-needed dealerships.

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