Medical marijuana may push South Florida’s industrial sector to new highs

Meanwhile, gov't officials are scrambling to come up with new zoning regulations
By Francisco Alvarado | March 28, 2017 09:45AM

From the March issue: In early February, two monthly gatherings of real estate professionals hosted by the Realtors Commercial Alliance Miami saw attendance spike three-fold. “We usually get 25 to 30 people showing up to these events,” said Michael Silver, first vice president for CBRE Miami. “But we had about 90 people at the February events because both had to do with medical marijuana.”

Silver told The Real Deal that a majority of attendees were interested in how they could cash in on a new segment of the commercial real estate market now that medical marijuana is legal in Florida. “They asked where they should be buying industrial warehouses that could be leased to marijuana growing businesses,” Silver said. “And they wanted to know if it was true that they can charge three to four times the [normal] rent.”

Across South Florida, realtors and developers are anticipating that an influx of medical marijuana tenants will add another profitable dimension to the region’s already bustling industrial sector, as well as other segments of the commercial market. At the same time, government officials are scrambling to come up with new zoning regulations that will determine where indoor marijuana grow houses and medical marijuana treatment centers and dispensaries will be located. Dozens of cities and counties have enacted moratoriums that range from three months to one year on allowing medical marijuana businesses until rules have been put in place. [more]