Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Keep the MVC in St. Louis!

Back in early 2006, there were rumblings that the Missouri Valley Conference was looking for a site on which to build a new headquarters building. Missouri Valley officials had been in talks to purchase the city-owned parking lot at 16th and Spruce, just south of the Scottrade Center, where it would but were unable to agree on a price. The most recent update I've been able to find came in August 2006, from Post-Dispatch sports columnist Bernie Miklasz's weekly "Bernie's Bits" feature:

The St. Louis-based Missouri Valley Conference hopes to soon close a deal with the city to acquire land near Savvis Center that will be developed into new headquarters for the MVC.

In the meantime, other cities, namely Kansas City and Omaha, have made overtures to the Valley in an attempt to lure the conference's highly successful men's basketball tournament to their respective new arenas. The Valley tournament (a.k.a. Arch Madness), has grown in popularity each year as the conference has become a basketball powerhouse. Last year the event set attendance records, drawing more than 22,000 for the final session and 85,000 for the tournament. It brings fans from all over the Midwest to St. Louis for four days, providing a nice economic shot in the arm to local hotels and restaurants during an otherwise slow time of year.

And when you factor in all of the assistance that the Missouri Valley Conference has provided to the St. Louis Sports Commission in helping lure NCAA events such as the 2005 Final Four, the overall impact of the Valley's presence here in St. Louis is huge. The city needs to accommodate the Valley to get the new headquarters building built downtown and keep Arch Madness here in St. Louis for the foreseeable future.

Monday, October 29, 2007

Another Large Block of Space

1010 Market Street currently has three contiguous floors (10-12) available at just $16.50 psf. Each floor is 17,896 sf, for a total block of 53,688 sf of space.

There are also two other entire floors available - 4 and 7. A nice Class A option for larger users.

Current tenants include Brown & James, Accenture and Yaeger, Jungbauer, Barczak, & Wendt, LLC.

Friday, October 26, 2007

Hey Panera!

So, you're looking for 80,000 square feet? How about this?

1881 Pine has five contiguous floors available - the entire building, up to 110,000 square feet - at just $14.00 psf.

It has a great location in up-and-coming Downtown West, close to major highways and public transportation, as well as Union Station, The Tap Room, and other exciting amenities. Ample surface parking is available nearby.

Did I mention it's only $14.00 psf?

Talk about a smart business decision!


Panera Mulling its Options

Panera Bread Co., with offices in Richmond Heights and Brentwood is looking to consolidate its offices into a single location by 2010. St. Louis appears to be the front-runner, but Boston - where Panera's executive team is located - is in the race as well.

Panera is looking for roughly 80,000 square feet and has "looked at everything from downtown out to the airport, to I-270 and 40, including Illinois," according to Chief Financial Officer Jeffrey Kip.

It would certainly be great to have Panera downtown, but keeping the company's headquarters in the St. Louis region is the most important issue here.

Update 10/30: Panera has publicly stated that its headquarters will remain in St. Louis! Now, let's just convince them to move downtown.!

Armstrong Teasdale Reiterates Interest in Ballpark Village

Certainly nothing new, but the Business Journal has confirmed earlier reports that Armstrong Teasdale is giving "serious consideration" to Ballpark Village in its search for 100,000 sf of space.

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Laclede's Landing Not Languishing

Laclede's Landing seems to have been left out of the recent discussions of downtown's renaissance. While The Landing has largely fallen out of favor as an entertainment destination in the minds of many St. Louisans, it has been a surprisingly resilient submarket for office space. And with Pinnacle making a huge investment in the area in the form of the Lumiere Place casino, Four Seasons Hotel and eventually condominiums, perhaps the exposure will bring The Landing renewed interest and new development in the future.

The Landing is a great spot for small businesses and startups due to its affordable lease rates, and its architecturally significant buildings with cool loft-style office spaces are a nice alternative for tenants looking for something more than just a traditional office suite.
The Bi-State Development Agency has been a longtime fixture of Laclede's Landing, occupying all of the office space in the Christian Peper Building at 707 N. 1st Street, and creative firms like Fuse Advertising, Kicking Cow Promotions and Habanero all call The Landing their home.
Recent leases include Pinnacle Entertainment and Full Circle Solutions in the Raeder Place Building. A quick review of office vacancies on Laclede's Landing yielded the following results:
  • Raeder Place - 727 N. 1st Street - 2,650 sf at $16.50
  • Cherrick Building - 800-804 N. 1st Street - 15,000 sf at $15-19
  • Cutlery Building - 612 N. 2nd Street - 4th and 5th floors, 8,000 sf apiece, $15
  • Witte Building - 707 N. 2nd Street - 3,300 sf at $8, 1,250 sf at $13 and 2,457 sf at $13
  • Feather Building - 807-809 N. 2nd Street - 6,000 sf at $12
  • Old Judge Building - 708 N. 2nd Street - 600 sf at $12, 1,610 sf at $12
  • Cast Iron Building - 712-714 N. 2nd Street - 1,800 and 5,500 square foot suites at $12 -
  • Traders Building - 801-805 N. 2nd Street - no space available
  • Greeley Building - 618-624 N. 2nd Street - no space available
  • First Street Ironworks - 716-720 N. 1st Street - no space available
  • Hoffman Brothers Produce Building - 700 N. 2nd Street - no space available
  • Levee House - 6800 N. 3rd Street - no space available

The gorgeous Cast Iron Building

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

An Eco-Friendly Concept from Our Neighbors to the North

In Chicago, Baum Development is hard at work converting a 93-year-old factory into a one-stop shop for environmentally focused stores and services. Known as the Green Exchange, the 250,000 square foot loft building will serve as a "green" retail center and an incubator for fledgling environmentally-conscious companies.

30 of the Green Exchange's 100 commercial spaces have already been leased. Tenants include an electric vehicle dealership, a car sharing service, a commercial printer that uses all-vegetable ink and recycled paper, and a company which sells hand-produced packaging for the specialty gift industry made from wild grass, banana fiber and other "tree free" paper.

True to the mission of the Green Exchange, Baum Development anticipates that the renovation will earn a silver certification from LEED. The project will include a green roof, bike room, cistern for rainwater collection and other environmentally-friendly features.

This project is a fantastic idea, and a concept that would be perfect for downtown St. Louis. The Art of Living building and the tech incubator in the Bandwith Exchange building are just two examples of successful of similar projects here. There's certainly room for more!

Friday, October 19, 2007

New to Downtown

Kansas City-based Zimmer Real Estate Services has opened an office in downtown St. Louis in the Shell Building at 1221 Locust. Zimmer specializes in the sale, leasing, development and management of commercial real estate, and its St. Louis office will be led by Richard Ward, formerly of Development Strategies.

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Union Station Office Space

Despite the recent exodus of retail tenants from Union Station, the Union Station Office Center appears to be quite healthy. A recent check on available office space at Union Station yielded the following results:

Grand Central - 1000 Union Station - 6,676 sf at $19.00 psf

Post Office Annex - 700 Union Station - 5,788 sf at $16.50 psf

The Power House - 800 Union Station - 100% leased

The nearby 43,000 sf theater space is still available as well. Perhaps it would be better to suited as office space?

There is one additional office building on the Union Station grounds which is separate from the Union Station Office Center - 326 S. 21st Street. Hilliker had the listing on this building for quite a while, but it no longer shows up in their inventory.

Update: The building pictured above is known as Union Square Plaza and is listed by the Sansone Group. This 50,000 sf building has 2,000-25,000 square feet available at $14.00 psf and is listed for sale at $3.8 million.

Friday, October 12, 2007

Downtown Leases this Week

There were two downtown leases reported in today's Business Journal:

Brown & Brown LLP leased 7,685 square feet in the Gateway Tower at One Memorial Drive.

Lord & Taylor LLC leased 12,100 square feet at 500 N. Broadway - a nice-sized lease for a building that has a pretty significant amount of vacant space.

Monday, October 08, 2007

At the Top of My Wish List: Scottrade

Scottrade recently announced plans to nearly double the size of its headquarters in west county, adding a seven-story parking office building and a parking garage adjacent to its current office building. Scottrade's rapid growth - it recently surpassed Charles Schwab in number of offices (309) and expects to have 500 branches by 2010 - is great for the St. Louis region and its status as a financial services hub.

Of course, there's nothing I'd like to see more than to have downtown regain its status as the region's financial center. Having Scottrade take on 400,000 square feet of space downtown would not only go a long way towards re-establishing downtown's financial district, it could provide huge visibility for a firm that has done a great (and aggressive) job of promoting itself in recent years. So don't get me wrong, I am very excited about Scottrade's growth and success, I just see their decision to expand in west county as a bit of a missed opportunity.

Wednesday, October 03, 2007

The Millenium Center - Quality Class B Space

The Millenium Center is a well-managed, nicely maintained Class B office building in the heart of downtown St. Louis offering a great value to tenants looking for quality space in a prime location.

Currently, the 262,000 square foot building has just over 100,000 square feet of space available at $12-$14 per square foot. It features vacant suites in a variety of sizes ranging from 525 square feet to 11,,860 square feet, up to 21,951 square feet of contiguous space, and a 4,726 square foot penthouse suite.

Tenants include law firm Evans & Dixon, and suite 902 (1,852 square feet) was recently leased to Transaction Transport Technologies, LLC. The ground floor retail spaces include Starbuck's, Geechi's Florist and Atom boutique.

For more information, visit: