33% Growth Projected For Houston Retail Development In 2016
Wulfe & Co’s annual retail survey projects 4.5M SF of new shopping center space will be built and opened in Houston in 2016, a 33% increase over the previous year. (CEO Ed Wulfe is pictured here.)
The robust activity is a result of demand created from the residential housing boom of the past four years, Houston’s population growth of about 100,000 annually, and the positive influence of a strong national economy.
Wulfe & Co predicts the majority of the new retail space will be owned or leased by individual stores like supermarkets, and there will only be about 13% of spec small store space available for lease. Many of the new developments are already under construction.
Supermarkets will dominate new retail construction, representing 39% of 2016’s projected growth. Kroger will open nine of its 123k SF stores, HEB will open five of its 100k SF prototype markets, Walmart will open four of its neighborhood supermarkets, Whole Foods will open one, and recent newcomer ALDI will add nine 18k SF stores to the market.
Substantial lease space will also be consumed by sports shops and gyms, and superstores like Costco and Walmart.
Wulfe & Co expects to see all-time high occupancy rates, topping out around 94%.