The Real Deal Miami

Tampa Bay struggles with retail development

City has more vacant sublease space than any other Fla. market

August 27, 2013 03:00PM

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International Plaza at 2223 North Westshore Boulevard in Tampa

While much of Florida is teeming with retail projects, Tampa Bay is an anomaly. The greater Tampa Bay area has no big developments in the pipeline and more vacant retail space than any other major market in the state.

Roughly 79 percent of the more than 1 million square feet of vacant sublease space on the market is in Tampa Bay, according to CBRE’s annual Florida retail report. This partly stems from Sweetbay Supermarket’s closure of 33 stores earlier this year. Twenty-two of the stores were located in Tampa Bay. The few retail projects there are redevelopments standalone buildings.

“Our retail people feel the worst is behind us,” Patty Nooney, senior managing director of CBRE’s Tampa office, told the Tampa Bay Times. “We will start seeing things improve. The A locations are in demand and you are going to see some of the older locations converted into medical and other uses.”

Miami, meanwhile, is at the forefront of South Florida retail growth. It has 1.15 million square feet of shopping center space under construction. Brickell CityCentre, a mixed-use project with 505,000-square-foot retail space, is largely responsible for that. [Tampa Bay Times]Mark Maurer

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