Gap grows up on Lincoln Road

Retailer will occupy two-story space that Apple had considered

Jul.July 10, 2012 06:00 PM

The Gap has signed a long-term, 20,000-square-foot lease at 1001 Lincoln Road and is planning to construct a new ground-up, two-story, 29,000-square-foot, structure on the site, according to the Comras Company, which brokered the deal on behalf of the site’s landlord.

The clothing retailer is setting up shop in the location where Apple had intended to house an expanded flagship store until backing out last year, after disputes with the city of Miami Beach’s preservation board over the current building’s historic value.

“Gap thought it would be a great idea for them to come in and take advantage of the opportunity to go and redevelop the property into a new flagship building,” Michael Comras, president of the Comras Company, told The Real Deal.

The retailer will occupy 6,800 square feet on the ground floor, and an additional 13,200 square feet on the second floor of the structure. There will be 9,000 square feet available for an additional tenant.

“[I]t just further solidifies Lincoln Road as one of the main shopping destinations [in the country],” he said.

Lincoln Road has seen rents jump from around $140 per square foot less than two years ago more than $200 per square foot today, according to Comras.

With space scarce, retailers are looking upwards, by building additional floors, to obtain more room, as The Real Deal first reported.

“It really furthers the concept of verticality,” said Greg Masin, senior director of retail services at Cushman & Wakefield in Miami. “We now have multiple tenants on the street taking a two-story format because they can’t get what they need.”

That class includes tenants such as Forever 21, H&M and Banana Republic. Banana Republic, which was one of the first locations on the street with an extra floor (though they did not construct it) is located at 1100 Lincoln Road. The building was purchased last week by Vornado for $132 million.

“I think it’s a trend of smart global retailers saying, ‘I need to be on Lincoln Road because it’s extremely relevant for my branding, but I need to do so efficiently,'” Masin said. “It sort of portends where I see things going for the next few years — it’s not the last two-story deal you’re going to see.”

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