Beacon Lakes drives Miami industrial market

Feb.February 01, 2011 09:29 AM

At the far edge of unincorporated Miami-Dade County, just a few miles east of the Everglades, is one of the area’s most recent industrial success stories.

Beacon Lakes Business Park, a joint venture of Flagler and AMB Property Corporation, reached 100 percent occupancy on all of its leasable space at the end of 2010 and is part of an Airport West submarket that is driving Miami’s already-strong industrial market.

“It has very close proximity to the Everglades, the Port of Miami and the airport cargo area of Miami Airport,” said George Pino, senior vice president at Flagler Real Estate Services, the company’s brokerage wing. “It’s really a perfect place for any logistics company to do business.”

The site’s activity was highlighted by a 173,312-square-foot lease renewal by Ryder at the end of the year.

Flagler’s newest building at Beacon Lakes Business Park, Building 12, a LEED Gold site, reached full occupancy this past October with two leases totaling 124,671 square feet.

Flagler owns 315 acres, or about 6 million square feet of entitlement at the site, with about 1.5 million square feet, or about 95 acres, developed, and Brian Latta, senior project manager at Flagler, said the firm has options moving forward with continued development.

“We have plenty of capacity and entitlement to continue to develop and grow for a couple of years,” he said.

Earlier this month, Cushman & Wakefield reported that Miami-Dade County’s industrial sector was among the top five markets in the country with the lowest vacancy rates, at 7.9 percent.

The Airport West market’s sweet spot is space between 20,000 and 30,000 square feet, a range which Pino said is very active right now. Rents in Airport West have gone up $1 per square foot in that range from a year ago, he said.

It’s a trend that is likely to continue as tenants, and the companies that need locations close to the airport, look to move and drive up demand.

“There are a lot of tenants playing musical chairs,” Pino said. “A lot of the tenants we go after — logistics companies — are telling us they’re going to need to grow in 2011.”

The reason for growth is due in part to a particularly stringent approach during the downturn.

“[These companies] been working on bare bones for the last 18 to 24 months in terms of space and employees,” he said.

According to Pino, there are about five or six companies in the marketplace looking for large-scale, 50,000- to 200,000-square-foot spaces.

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