Philadelphia, PA (PRWEB) December 03, 2012
New research shows that Center City Philadelphia has maintained its dominant position as a 24-hour downtown. Residential and tenant demand has been steadily rising since 2010, and the momentum is expected to carry forward through 2013, according to two research recently released by the Center City District. ( Housing Report and the Retail Report).
The total demand for shoppers’ goods in the primary trade area (I mile from City Hall) is more than $750 million. Those retailers with a Center City presence benefit from a downtown residential population approaching 180,000, a daytime office population of 260,000 (8.5 times that of King of Prussia market), and tourist traffic that exceeds 12 million overnight visitors annually.
Center City has continued to grow market share among singles, couples, parents with children, and empty nesters that prefer to live downtown. Approximately 12 % of the city’s population now call Center City home. The solid demand for housing has fueled resurgence in residential construction. More than 2,500 new units of high-quality residential are expected to deliver in the trade area by year end 2014, including 1,876 apartment units currently under construction, primarily in the core of downtown.
“The market fundamentals continue to improve, which is part of what is driving demand in the Center City core and greater Center City, the primary trade area,” said Michelle Shannon, VP Marketing, Center City District, Co-chair, Philadelphia Retail Marketing Alliance. The average household income in the core of Center City is $93,126. The market also boasts a very highly educated population. More than 52% of residents 25 and older in the primary trade area hold at least a bachelor’s degree, it’s even higher in the Center City core where 73% hold at least a bachelor’s and more than 41% hold a graduate or professional degree.
“Our strong demographics combined with a truly walkable environment and a powerful amenity base that includes architecturally rich building stock, great public spaces and cultural assets have set the stage for a truly compelling retail environment. Demand for space has pushed tenants beyond the most popular retail blocks such as Walnut St. onto side streets and the western blocks of Chestnut and Market Streets,” said Shannon.
Close to 90,000 sq. ft. of new retail has recently opened or is about to, including tenants such as Intermix, Ulta Beauty, Anne Klein, Allen Edmonds and Marshalls. Developers are moving forward with new developments that include another 100,000 sq. ft. of new retail space in the core of Center City and neighborhoods adjacent to the core. Projects such as 1616 Walnut Street (30,000 sq. ft. retail) and the former Daffy’s space (80,000 sq. ft.) offer an opportunity for larger tenants to gain a foothold in the downtown market.
The vacancy rate for existing retail space in downtown Philadelphia hovers around 11%. “There is such demand for location in Center City, that when a store does close, the space turns over very quickly,” said Brandon Famous, President, Fameco Real Estate. “One of the biggest challenges we see is a lack of alternatives for tenants who want to be in Center City, but need more than 10,000 square feet. “Retailers are becoming more comfortable with vertical formats and there are several new spaces coming on to the market that can accommodate this,” said Famous.
PRMA The Philadelphia Retail Marketing Alliance is comprised of representatives from Center City District, the City of Philadelphia Commerce Department, the Office of the City Representative, the Greater Philadelphia Tourism Marketing Corporation, the Philadelphia Convention & Visitors Bureau and Philadelphia Industrial Development Corporation with a mission to enhance the quality and quantity of Center City’s retail offerings. PRMA’s new website and retail attraction program aim to elevate Philadelphia’s retail market expand employment opportunities and increase city tax revenues. More information may be found at http://www.PhiladelphiaRetail.com.