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JLL Report Calls Market East America's Most Affordable Prime Retail Corridor

JLL Report Calls Market East America's Most Affordable Prime Retail Corridor
A rendering of the glass entranceway to PREIT and Macerich's Fashion District Philadelphia

Philadelphia's Market East corridor is the cheapest prime shopping area in any major North American city, according to a new report.

JLL kicked off a new research series called CityRetail with a report listing and comparing "prime retail corridors," which it defined as "a nationally recognized shopping district distinguished by its mix of high street, national and international tenants."

Of the areas it listed, Market East averaged $50/SF asking rents in 2017, the cheapest in North America.

As the decidedly second-place option for high-end shopping in Center City behind Walnut Street, Market East has spent decades failing to capitalize on its prime positioning between the Convention Center — and Reading Terminal Market within it — and the Independence Hall historical tourism area. But with new developments like East Market and Fashion District Philadelphia soon to deliver, that is changing rapidly.

Both East Market, which is putting significant retail below office and residential towers, and Fashion District Philadelphia, the redevelopment of the Gallery Mall, have amassed an impressive mix of local and national chain's like MOM's Organic Market, an AMC movie theater, H&M and more.

The buzz generated by these two simultaneous developments caused rents to increase by 25% in the past year, the fastest growth in the U.S. and behind only Bloor Street in Toronto among JLL's tracked markets in North America. JLL anticipates dozens of new-to-market tenants to flock to the area as construction finishes, with both cheaper rents and larger blocks of available space, distinguishing it from Walnut Street.