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12 Must Reads for the CRE Industry Today (May 21, 2020)

U.S. demand for warehouses could surge as lockdowns accelerate online shopping, reports Business Insider. In addition to the coronavirus, plumbing systems in emptied commercial buildings could put returning employees at risk of Legionnaire’s and other illnesses, according to the New York Times. These are among today’s must reads from around commercial real estate industry.

  1. Warehouses Are The New Darling of Commercial Real-Estate Thanks to a Surge in E-Commerce, With Firms like Macy's and Boeing Selling while Amazon Snaps Space Up “The US market for warehouse spaces could surge as the coronavirus crisis crams years of online shopping adoption into just a few months.” (Business Insider, subscription required)
  2. After Coronavirus, Office Workers Might Face Unexpected Health Threats “When you finally return to work after the lockdown, coronavirus might not be the only illness you need to worry about contracting at the office.” (New York Times)
  3. The Metropolitan Museum of Art Plans to Reopen in Mid-August “The Metropolitan Museum of Art announced plans to reopen to the public in mid-August or “perhaps a few weeks later,” according to a statement released Tuesday.” (New York Post)
  4. $1.2 Million Rent Dispute Erupts Between A's and Oakland Coliseum Landlords “The Oakland A’s baseball team and its landlord, the Coliseum Authority, are at odds over the team deferring its $1.2 million stadium rent payment that was due April 1 amid the coronavirus pandemic.” (San Francisco Chronicle)
  5. Some Miami Commercial Landlords to Continue Rent Relief, Despite County Reopenings “Within days of the pandemic shutdown, tenants and landlords were negotiating rent abatements. Though governments have eased restrictions, retailers and restaurateurs expect the recovery to be a long, slow road. And that means rent relief discussions are still on the table.” (Miami Herald)
  6. Sephora to Start Reopening Stores — With Lots of Safety Protocols “Sephora will reopen its stores in phases, starting with more than 70 locations on May 22. But the in-store environment — at least for the time being — will be different than what customers are used to.” (Chain Store Age)
  7. Facebook’s Offices Will Be 75% Quieter When They Reopen In July “Facebook is introducing a raft of social distancing measures in its offices as it prepares to welcome a limited number of employees back from July 6, according to people familiar with the matter who spoke to Bloomberg.” (Forbes)
  8. Uncertain Future Rattles Italy’s Famed Restaurants “Italy’s restaurants and pizzerias, for foodies the world over a key reason to visit, are facing an existential threat.” (AP)
  9. Germany is Reopening With One of the Lowest Fatality Rates Among Countries Heavily Affected By the Coronavirus Pandemic. Here's a Look At Its Approach. “Germany has started reopening on a state-by-state basis after enacting coronavirus lockdown measures beginning March 22.” (Business Insider)
  10. AIA: Architecture Billings Index Decreased in April to Record Low “Demand for design services in April saw its steepest decline on record, according to a new report today from The American Institute of Architects (AIA).” (Calculated Risk)
  11. Tenant Advocates Take Aim at Corporate Landlords “The group is demanding Congress make corporate landlords pay for the cancellation of rent, mortgages, and utilities for the duration of the COVID-19 pandemic, along with financial relief to smaller property owners who may soon face foreclosure.” (Real Estate Weekly)
  12. Federal Realty Launches Contactless Pick Up at DC-Area Centers “In response to growing concern about the COVID-19 pandemic, Federal Realty, the Rockville, Md.-based real estate company with more than 100 retail properties nationwide, has started a contactless pick-up program at its shopping centers in Washington, D.C., Maryland and Virginia.” (Commercial Observer)
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