As important as it can be to reflect at the end of the year, at the beginning of the year, it can be interesting to make predictions as well. It becomes a lesson in patience, analyzing how our predictions are coming true—or not—throughout the months and seeing how things are changing in the commercial real estate world.

Last year we asked a selection of brokers about their predictions for the year about to unfold and we have done it again. Inquiring minds are curious about how things could adapt, develop, and shift over the next year. Without further ago, here are some of our brokers ideas for 2020.

Jim Farrell, Executive Director of Leasing & Brokerage, states, “restaurants will continue to close… and restaurants will open. The confidence of the entrepreneur!”  It looks like the entrepreneurial spirit could continue to soar through 2020.

Michael Leon, Leasing Representative, believes, “more second-generation restaurant opportunities will open up in both the suburbs and urban core for food tenants. Also, entertainment and fitness concepts will lead the way in repurposing retail spaces. All things considered, our leasing market in the D.C. region is very healthy and I expect that to continue.”

Melissa Webb, Executive Director of Brokerage, predicts that “More banks will open non-manned storefronts with ATMs.” As a growing fear in retail and the idea of the retail apocalypse, there is always the concern of stores closing, but it’s also interesting to consider how technology will shift our understanding and knowledge of the traditional retail space, including for companies like banks.

Pat O’Meara, Director of Brokerage, says, “I predict that food halls will lose their luster, and at least two of them will shutter before the end of the year. Landlords will realize that they are not worth the investment or energy and will avoid making these types of deals moving forward.”

Who really knows what 2020 has in store for us, but what we do know is that brokers have lots of ideas on what the commercial real estate business may see this year. From entrepreneurship standing strong to more second-generation restaurant opportunities, non-manned bank storefronts to less food halls, it’s clear that 2020 could prove to be a very exciting year. So let’s see what happens!

Author Rappaport

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