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Industrial Pep Talk

Industrial Pep Talk


Just in time for college football season, First Industrial's Corey Richardson rallied the troops at last week's Bisnow Atlanta Industrial Summit. "We're still the capital of the Southeast. But we don't act like it sometimes," Corey told more than 300 commercial real estate pros at the Ritz-Carlton Buckhead. "We do have a  lot of positives here," he says. "Traffic is an issue wherever you go. Ours gets played up, but it' not as bad as you think." (We would've told you this sooner but we were stuck on 285.)
Pattillo Industrial Real Estate's Larry Callahan (right, with Duke's Chris Brown)  echoed those sentiments saying "we need to  start thinking better  about Atlanta," citing the airport, Porsche's HQ, PulteCorp's recent HQ move here, and Ponce City Market as reasons to be hopeful. "We've got to be the IT healthcare capital of the world. We already are—we've just got to realize it." (Confidence is key, it's like dating or playing mini-golf.)
Prologis' Kent Mason (with JLL's Rodney Davidson  and IDI's  Lisa Ward) says, when it comes to industrial deals, "it's Atlanta or Atlanta" for company decision makers. "It's rare that it's a project that's considering Atlanta versus Charlotte." (Look, it's not a competition, but we're winning.) Couple that with "attractive" bulk warehouse rates, plus a nexus of population, and Kent says companies are considering more deals here. Atlanta is where most of the main consumer product companies have DCs, and it's where they'll stay because "hat's where the mouths are." (Also a boon for the tongue stud business.)
Seefried's Greg Herren says as retailers grow online sales to 20% of total sales, they're having to tailor their distribution hubs to speed up delivery. "They can't execute in the traditional bricks-and-mortar format, and they need  another building for that," he says. Chris(left) notes that the demand for warehousing for e-commerce is creating a paradox: Since the design of buildings used for e-fulfillment is different, developers are hesitant to build spec before they know how retailer needs will shake out.