10 Must Reads for the CRE Industry Today (September 20, 2017)

The Wharf, a waterfront commercial and residential destination along the Potomac River, will open next month, reports The New York Times. To offset declining foot traffic, landlords are transforming strip malls into winter hangouts, according to The Wall Street Journal.

  1. A Decaying Waterfront in Washington Returns to Life “A struggling waterfront along the Potomac River will morph into a long-awaited commercial and residential destination known as the Wharf when it opens next month.” (The New York Times)
  2. Landlords Try Turning Strip Malls into Winter Hangouts “Landlords of strip malls are trying to take the chill out of the air by adding outdoor entertainment programs, in hopes of attracting more shoppers in an era of declining foot traffic.” (The Wall Street Journal, subscription required)
  3. Yellen Reappointment as Fed Chair Seen as More Likely: Survey “In a significant change, 38 percent of respondents to the CNBC Fed Survey now expect President Donald Trump to reappoint Fed Chair Janet Yellen, up from 10 percent in the July survey. And about 60 percent say the president should reappoint her.” (CNBC)
  4. Dozens of Investors Show Interest in Plaza Hotel “About 50 private-equity firms, foreign governments and other investors have expressed interest in New York’s Plaza Hotel since the majority owner put it on the block last month, according to the broker handling the sales process.” (The Wall Street Journal, subscription required)
  5. Unusually Large Loans Mask Decline in NYC Commercial Real Estate Lending “Take a look at loan originations for commercial real estate properties in New York City in the second quarter and you’ll find something unusual: The quarter’s biggest loans aren’t just big, they’re really, really big. And the size of those loans appears to be masking what would otherwise look like a decline in NYC loan origination for the quarter.” (Forbes)
  6. Trump Lawyer: Moscow Trump Tower ‘Solely a Real Estate Deal’ “An abandoned proposal to develop a Trump Tower in Moscow during the 2016 presidential election was "solely a real estate deal and nothing more," the personal lawyer for President Donald Trump told congressional staff on Tuesday.” (CNBC)
  7. Corelogic Estimates Hurricane Irma Property Damage at $42.5-$65 Billion “Analytics firm Corelogic on Tuesday estimated total insured and uninsured losses from damage to properties from Hurricane Irma at $42.5-$65 billion.” (Reuters)
  8. Behind Kushner’s Record Deal for 666 Fifth, an Unusual Appraisal “Kushner Companies’ record $1.8 billion acquisition of 666 Fifth Avenue in 2007, funded with $1.75 billion in debt, was a gamble the firm is still reeling from today. But thanks to a highly unusual appraisal, the deal didn’t look that risky on paper to the bond investors that ultimately funded it.” (The Real Deal)
  9. Fitch: More U.S. Lodging Consolidation Is Expected “Fitch Senior Director Stephen Boyd believes that second-tier operators, pushed by a need for scale, should focus on the luxury segment when it comes to growth in order to stay competitive. Boyd analyzed the report’s findings in an interview for Commercial Property Executive.” (Commercial Property Executive)
  10. Robots Are Coming Online to Change Construction Forever “Over the past decade, new companies have been popping up with robotics to handle a myriad of tasks on construction sites from bricklaying to surveying to welding. While various construction management executives and experts with whom CO spoke agreed that the robotics industry is still very nascent in the construction business, the demand is there, and startups are testing more devices all the time.” (Commercial Observer)
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