Dunkin’ Donuts Park, in its maiden season as home of the Hartford Yard Goats, has been named the Best Double-A Ballpark in America, per a recent poll conducted by Ballpark Digest. The online poll—which began May 30th before concluding on June 20th—achieved participation by 178,000 fans, with each of the 30 Double-A ballparks in the nation considered. Dunkin’ Donuts Park faced fierce competition (with Pennsylvania club Altoona Curve coming in second) and is a testament to the draw of the Yard Goats’ new home. The park has already sold out 15 times this season, including 11 of the last 17 games.The park’s design emphasizes socialization as a critical part of the game experience, with a multitude of concession options on offer, as well as amenities including the Travelers Fun Zone. This endeavor clearly has resonated with visitors to Dunkin’ Donuts Park, and their rapid incorporation of the park into the center of Hartford’s entertainment scene indicates the beginning of an exciting new period in Downtown North. The stadium’s function as another downtown entertainment option further provides employees with greater opportunity to meet, mingle and network in this evolving 18-hour city.
The ramifications of a revitalization of this section of the city are substantive and positive: increased vibrancy and available amenities in the area will be a boon for businesses as Hartford’s CBD expands northwards, furthering a collective optimism regarding the city’s future.
Next up in our New England Market Overview recap series, we cover the Hartford market. Our Connecticut team presented on the state of the industrial, office and investment markets.
Industrial Market Overview
John Reed, Senior Vice President/Partner, led with an in-depth overview of the Greater Hartford Industrial market.
“Last year there was 4 MSF of industrial volume and 1 MSF of net absorption. Consequently, the vacancy was down 9.2% from 2015. This led to improving values, rising lease rates, increased sales prices and higher land prices per acre, creating a premium on large industrial sites.” – JR
“The distribution model has changed. Drivers need to get to their destination and back in one day. Being centrally located in New England has fueled this demand. With the evolution of e-commerce, next-day—if not same-day—delivery will continue.” – JR
“UPS absorbed 230,000 SF of space at Cornerstone’s 1 Market Circle in Windsor. FedEx Ground is building a 525,000 SF distribution center at 1000 Middle Street in Middletown. You may recognize this as the former 1 MSF Aetna office campus; it is a perfect reuse of this property. This is the fourth FedEx operation established in Greater Hartford in the last four years.” – JR
“Due to the diminished inventory of quality existing buildings, some users are having to build.” – JR
Our industrial forecast for 2017 includes:
Office Market Overview
“2016 was a relatively flat year for leasing velocity, with renewals outpacing relocations. The market saw approximately 100,000 SF of net absorption and the sublease inventory was reflective of a fairly healthy economy.” – AA
“The Greater Hartford Office market is still very much a traditional economy. By comparison, in Metro Boston approximately 40% of the tenants in the market for 2016 identified themselves as ‘tech’ companies.” – JM
“Buildings in submarkets with walkable amenities and superior highway access led the way in 2016.” – AA
Our office market forecast for 2017 includes:
Investment Market Overview
Patrick Mulready, Senior Vice President/Partner, covered the Connecticut Investment market.
Our investment market forecast for 2017 includes:
Overall, market fundamentals in Greater Hartford are strong and the outlook is positive for 2017, particularly in the Industrial Sector.
Did you miss our Boston Market Overview or Rhode Island Market Overview recaps? Click on the following link to catch up.
There has been a tremendous amount of investment in Hartford recently and a lot to look forward to as a result, including the new UConn campus opening this fall and the scheduled completion of the Yard Goats’ new ballpark this spring. Add to that list a piece of good news from the private sector: United Bank will move its headquarters from Glastonbury to Goodwin Square in the fall. The 68,000 SF lease will consolidate over 200 employees from two different buildings in Glastonbury, as well as a third location in South Windsor.
CBRE/New England’s John McCormick was responsible for bringing in the regional bank, whose move is expected to have a significant impact on the area. The United Bank tenancy in the building will increase the occupancy level by over 20%. Moreover, as a growing institution, United Bank is exactly the kind of tenant that Hartford wants to attract as the city looks to expand its downtown employment base and capitalize on the current national trend towards urbanization.
To learn more, please see the following Hartford Courant article covering the transaction.
The Greater Hartford office market continued to strengthen in 2014 with declining vacancy rates, as current and new tenants absorbed more space. Leasing activity heated up in the third quarter with over 97,000 square feet of available space becoming occupied, representing the fourth consecutive quarter of positive gains. This pushed the vacancy rate down to 16.3 percent, which is the tightest the Greater Hartford office market has been in the past five years. To read more click here.
by Suzanne Duca, Director of Research
The third quarter 2014 statistics for the Hartford market have been published by the CBRE/NE Creative+Analytics team. Click the links below to download quick reference guides.
Be on the lookout for our MarketView reports later this month!