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    Building, construction, and design roundtable – Utah Business – Utah Business - February 9, 2021 by Mr HomeBuilder

    This month, Utah Business partnered with Holland & Hart to host a roundtable event featuring building, construction, and design leaders to discuss women in the industry, impacts of the new administration, and concerns going into 2021. Moderated by Bruce Bingham, partner with Hamilton Partners, here are a few highlights from the event.

    Troy Gregory | President | Hunt Electric

    2020 has been a really strong year and we see the same for 2021. We have a really strong backlog going into 2022. Weve seen a drop off [in hospitality] and in office space and retail, but multi-family is still running really, really strong.

    Rich Thorn | President & CEO | Associated General Contractors

    Contrary to belief, 2020 ended up being a really pretty good year across all sectors. When COVID-19 came out in February/March, everybody was going, Oh, no, whats going to happen? But the construction industry rallied because it was considered an essential service. Everybody rolled up their sleeves and said You know what? Weve got to be able to deliver. And they adopted practices and procedures that allowed them to keep their doors open and keep delivering construction projects for the end-user. They did it safely. They did it with, to some degree, really high exposures to this virus.

    Becky Hawkins | Founding Partner | Method Studio

    From the architectural side of things, weve seen great success this year. Other than high-level positions where weve gone out of the state to seek specialty positions, we havent seen much of a dip. In fact, I think in some ways weve had greater success in the last six months than we did a year ago.

    Ali Streetman | Construction Manager | Portman Holdings

    I love working in this industry. Ive never really had an issue being a woman onsite or being a woman leading the project. On our current architectural team for the hotel, three of the five architects that are working on the project are all women, with two of them in the lead position. So were taking over the world, get ready.

    Becky Hawkins | Founding Partner | Method Studio

    It takes a village, you know, but I have two [male] partners. Ive never experienced any issues with them and weve taken that philosophy and applied it to our leadership and we have 43 percent women leaders. So yeah, rock on girls.

    Gary Ellis | President | Jacobsen Construction

    I would be lying if I said labor availability isnt an issue. What weve seen generally is that weve got more large projects here locally than weve had in many years in the past. And Im a little concerned that weve got so many large projects that were going to really tax the ability of our larger subcontractors to be able to continue to support all those projects.

    With regard to women, were participating in a couple of different peer groups that are actually combining resources and letting the women in our firm meet with the women in their firm at various positions as well. And talking about their experiences and learning from one another and asking questions and helping provide feedback to us as well.

    Jason Kilgore | President | Kilgore Companies

    I think about the demographics of my company, and really there are so many people that are really out in the field operating equipment, driving trucks. And we have seen an influx of women over the last 10 years start to become truck drivers and operators. And to be blunt, the women truck drivers many times are much better than the men truck drivers because they treat the equipment better and our equipment lasts longer. You dont have as high of repair with some of those women, and its really been really refreshing from our standpoint.

    Mark Harris | Senior Principle | Reaveley Engineers

    During these last 10 months, as weve been working remotely, we brought on six or so new members to our firm. From the interview process to onboarding, to implementation of work, its all being done remotely. There are several of those new hires Ive never met face-to-face and its been both challenging and a unique experience in that weve had the younger generation clamoring for work-from-home opportunities in our industry for years and weve been very resistant to it. These last 10 months have shown us that remote work is here to stay and its actually very productive.

    Chris Knoles | Director of Marketing | Zwick Construction

    The very first thing we did when it became apparent that COVID was going to have a drastic change on our operations was to just take a deep breath and realize that its hitting every single person, every single company, and every single industry in every country. [We realized] that we dont have to outsmart what the next guys going to do in order to stay competitive and things have played out as expected.

    Becky Hawkins | Founding Partner | Method Studio

    When the pandemic first started, with workplace design being a very large portion of what we do here, we saw a number of our projects go on a hold within 30 days. We truly thought we were going to be tightening up our workplace or corporate market sector, and what has occurred for us is theres been a transition.

    Many of those projects that went on hold have now come back. For one of our clients, weve taken what was going to be a renovation for them, and now were building a smaller scale office building. And then another portion of our work thats grown significantly is rather than new 200,000 square feet offices, were doing more smaller offices and quite a bit more renovation while repurposing and rethinking how the space is used.

    James Williams | President | AE Urbia

    We were actually already able to work remotely so when this hit, our entire office was able to go home and continue working. And after a while, we brought everybody back. We were fortunate enough to use larger workstations so people could be sitting at their desks and [still social distancing].

    This has worked very well for us. And weve kind of used our office as an example. Itll take a while to get back to how it was, but I dont think itll ever be the way that it was exactly. Well design with better ventilation systems, better circulation, and well start to design for this type of issue because it will probably happen again in the future.

    Troy Gregory | President | Hunt Electric

    A lot of plants got impacted there for a while, or they shut down. And I think its similar in a lot of the manufacturingthey got behind and theyve been trying to catch up on that. In breakers and panel and distribution, its starting to get better on your general products. On the big, long-lead products like transformers, those are still a concern for tight timeline type projects.

    Its really hard right now for contractors to lock down PVC pipe. Were being told that after the first of the year, that price will start coming down, and theyre starting to catch back up with some of their supply, so thatll be good. Copper is on a steady climb right now. Steel is flat. Its high, but its flat. I think as far as fixtures go, its really hit and miss. Overall, I think a lot of the initial issues are starting to be worked through.

    Aaron Metcalfe | VP | Hogan Associates Construction

    I think this issue really brings up the importance of owners, developers, and architects pushing for the CMGC process. With the process, not only can the contractor be in contact with the subcontractors and suppliers, but also through constructability reviews, and through that process, we can help advise our clients and architectural partners on the best ways of procurement moving forward.

    John Evans | VP | Okland Construction

    The reality is that we just need to be on top of things right now. People have to be monitoring situations to make sure that we dont miss the delivery materials. We have not had issues to-date yet. We are getting those notifications that we always get at the end of the year, but they are coming a little bit sooner from our steel suppliers, about the inflation and the rate increases that are going to hit in 2021. Well have to just see how they all materialize when we actually get there.

    Jason Kilgore | President | Kilgore Companies

    Concrete is going to go up $8 to $10 a yard in the Utah market. A little bit of questioning on asphalt, thats going to be stable, its going to go up a little bit.

    Just a couple of months ago, we had a concrete shortage, so I think thats going to continue into 2021 as busy as we are. Hydrocarbons have been cheap over the last year or two, which has been nice. And I think thats going to stay the same, but it also depends on what happens with travel with people driving cars and jets, and what has happened with our refineries.

    Jeff Palmer | EVP | Layton Construction

    I think the one question I get on this almost every day is, Are prices going down? Unfortunately, prices typically do not come down so each of us are [going to have to be] more competitive with each other with our fees. But in terms of pricing, as weve just heard, material price is not coming down.

    Gary Ellis | President | Jacobsen Construction

    Lumber prices went up through the roof last year, which was a very sudden and quick change. And they have come back down to some level, but theyre not coming down as quickly as we thought they might. The other thing that were very concerned with right now is the ports, because even as the factories can start producing overseas quicker and getting things shipped into the country, were having real issues right now with COVID and with all the online purchasing right now of everything getting held up at the ports for longer than expected.

    Steven Shepherd | President | BBFFA

    We do a lot of work for the state of Utah. We have a big marketing meeting once a month and our list used to be two pages long of the things that we were chasing, now its half a page. And part of that is coming from the state of Utah. So it looks like its starting to have an impact.

    Lori Haglund | Marketing Director | VBFA

    The projects that we see going before the legislature and being approved by the legislature for state projects have really dwindled down and thats kind of frightening. But I keep thinking back to 2008 when things were bad and they really infused money through the state into projects. And I think thats how we weathered it so well. And so Im optimistic that once this clears up there really, itll come with a vengeance.

    Rich Thorn | President & CEO | Associated General Contractors

    Weve got a new administration coming in. One of the top priorities were hearing about is this new highway bill, not necessarily just continuing resolution that may be for the interim, but there could be some good money coming from the federal government. We also have a new governor and Im confident that theres going to be more work coming through the Utah Department of Transportation for the civil side.

    Weve got a legislative session coming up and theres some talk about potentially a bond. That would be a good thing. One of the negative impacts of this COVID-19 situation is the local governments, or the collector road funds. Once everybody stopped driving, that really negatively impacted local cities and counties and their ability to build roads and to maintain them. We anticipate a little bit of a turnaround on that part of the funding stream for again, for the civil side of our membership.

    James Williams | President | AE Urbia

    Itll be interesting to see what the new administration does as far as programs and funding. It really boils down to, if theres money to borrow, then constructions good. Soon, as the money stops flowing, thats when were in trouble. Weve been able to be profitable under a Democratic president or a Republican president either way. This last president has been really great for our industry and weve been very comfortable and we think it seems like the governments very comfortable printing money these days. And so hopefully that money will continue to circulate and this new administration will build on top of the success of the last one.

    Rich Thorn | President & CEO | Associated General Contractors

    We have a lot of confidence, a high degree of confidence in Governor-elect Spencer Cox and his team. We have always taken a fairly conservative attitude about debt and about spending, although we have recognized investing in our future. So we anticipate really good things on the local level with good people steering the ship, both in the executive branch, in the House, and the Senate. We dont anticipate any big curveballs.

    Aaron Metcalfe | VP | Hogan Associates Construction

    I think as far as Governor Cox, itll be interesting to see how his rural roots will play into things. Theres been this discussion about developing rural Utah better than what has been done before. DFCM has done some smaller projects as of late in 2020, with the backing of the state, trying to get some projects going, especially at the state park level.

    Ali Streetman | Construction Manager | Portman Holdings

    Just maintaining schedule and opening on time to deliver a product thats been a long time in the making for Salt Lake City. And to get the [convention center] hotel open, and hopefully coincide with everything getting back to normal for the Salt Palace and the industry as a whole. Thats the reason were building this hotel in the first place.

    Aaron Metcalfe | VP | Hogan Associates Construction

    The security of our subcontractors, making sure that that base of workers and companies is healthy, profitable, not just with COVID, but financially as well, because it really is. The pandemic is going to create some financial issues long term.

    And then were also facing some other construction work, residential, for one, thats booming. So as commercial contractors, we really have to work with our subcontracting partners and make this a real kind of collaborative effort so that were all successful. Its not just about the projects, its about the relationships moving forward and so thats my biggest concern.

    Chris Knoles | Director of Marketing | Zwick Construction

    Going into this, my biggest fear, personally, was our subcontractors and their ability to change, adapt, and to step up or to make changes as needed, mainly from a financial perspective. Are they overreaching? Are they over-committing? Do they have the sophistication to meet the work levels that were still demanding of them?

    And then also upstream at our clients. Do they have access to capital? Will they have access to money? Whether its DFCM or private developers, what will the next 12 to 24 months look like? And I think those are maybe the concerns that keep me up at night, financial, both from the client perspective and also the subcontractors. But again, Ive got nothing but gratitude knowing that I believe this group, and this industry specifically in Utah, will emerge from the pandemic stronger than virtually any other state.

    Excerpt from:
    Building, construction, and design roundtable - Utah Business - Utah Business

    New office building will anchor Allen mixed-use project – The Dallas Morning News - February 9, 2021 by Mr HomeBuilder

    Developers of a new Allen mixed-use project are starting off with a speculative office building. JaRyCo plans to construct a 102,000-square-foot building as the first phase of its 135-acre Farm development on State Highway 121 at Alma Drive.

    Called FarmWORK One, the three-story office building is scheduled to open next summer in the projects central district.

    We spent a lot of time with our design team and the brokerage community to understand what is important to office tenants today and have created a unique building that promotes health and wellness of employees and brings long-term benefits to office users, Bruce Heller, president of JaRyCo Development, said in a statement. This office design continues our overall concept of providing a totally unique and different type of mixed-use center at The Farm in Allen.

    Allen-based JaRyCo announced plans for The Farm last summer and wants it to include more than 1.6 million square feet of office space, 142,000 square feet of retail, a 150-room hotel, 60,000 square feet of restaurants, townhomes and 2,400 urban residential units.

    The Farm will also include an entertainment and restaurant complex called The Hub, which will be across the street from the planned office building.

    Dallas architect Omniplan designed the offices. Commercial property firm Avison Young is leasing the project.

    The Farm in Allen will also have a 1-acre lake, boardwalk restaurants, more than 2 miles of hike-and-bike trails and a 16-acre greenbelt along Watters Creek.

    The office building is the latest of a series of new offices started or announced in the S.H. 121 corridor.

    Corporate office is the primary driver for Allens growth on S.H. 121 and exemplifies our strategy to bring quality jobs to residents, said Dan Bowman, CEO/executive director of the Allen Economic Development Corp. The unique design and amenities of FarmWORK One address the demands of todays market and will set Allen apart as a premier office destination.

    Several office buildings are in the works along S.H. 121 in the Craig Ranch development.

    Independent Financial just started construction on a second building in its headquarters campus in Craig Ranch just north of Allen. And developers VanTrust Real Estate and Kaizen Development Partners have announced speculative office projects at Craig Ranch.

    See the original post:
    New office building will anchor Allen mixed-use project - The Dallas Morning News

    Amazon unveils design for the second phase of its Virginia HQ – Construction Specifier – The Construction Specifier - February 9, 2021 by Mr HomeBuilder

    Amazon has revealed its design for the second phase of its Arlington, Virginia, headquarters that will be designed by architecture firm NBBJ.Image courtesy NBBJ/Amazon

    Tech giant Amazon has revealed its proposed design for the second phase of its Arlington, Virginia, headquarters. Designed by architecture firm NBBJ, the plans infuse nature into the urban landscape and create a unique, sustainable environment.

    We hope that the blend of architectural and ecological elements at PenPlacethe name of the sitewill inspire those who work here and serve as an inviting place for neighbors to gather, relax, dine, and shop, Amazon said. We look forward to working together with the community in the coming months to bring this vision to life.

    Sustainable buildings

    Amazon will develop 260,129 m2 (2.8 million sf) of new office space distributed across three 22-story buildings. Designs include a workspace for employees that will prioritize areas for collaboration, natural light, and interaction with nature. The design promotes well-being and physical exercise, agency (the ability for employees to choose when, how, and where to work), and a connection with the local community.

    The new buildings are designed to be Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Platinum. The project also includes an all-electric central heating and cooling system that will run on 100 percent renewable energy from a solar farm located in Pittsylvania County in southern Virginia, procured in collaboration with Arlington County. This will align with Amazons Climate Pledge to be net-zero carbon by 2040 and advance Arlington and Amazons shared commitment to be leaders in the fight against climate change.

    The Helix

    Amazons Seattle headquarters include the Spheres, a place where employees can work or unwind while immersed in nature. The Spheres were inspired by concepts of biophilia and a similarly engaging and rejuvenating concept is the basis for the Arlington headquarters: a double helix.

    The natural beauty of a double helix can be seen throughout the world, from the geometry of our own DNA to the elemental form of galaxies, weather patterns, pinecones, and seashells, Amazon said. The Helix at the Arlington headquarters will offer a variety of alternative work environments for employees amidst lush gardens and trees native to the region. A true double helix in shape and structure, this unique building will feature two walkable paths of landscaped terrain that will spiral up the outside of the building. Since innovative technology often derives from the intersection of art and science, Amazon planned an artist-in-residence program to be hosted within the Helix. Local artists, in collaboration with employees, will be inspired by the nature within the building as they create their pieces.

    Gathering on the green

    A variety of inviting open spaces totaling more than 1 ha (2.5 acre) will be accessible for public use. An amphitheater facing a spacious central green will be able to accommodate outdoor concerts, farmers markets, and movies in the park. A forest grove will offer more shaded areas for relaxation, a quiet place to talk, or to enjoy the natural setting.

    Retail pavilions and restaurants will be located throughout the site. The plans also include room for a childcare center, a dog run, and a food truck area with plentiful outdoor seating. Amazon we will also create a dedicated 1858-m2 (20,000-sf) community space that can support educational initiatives and be flexible enough to accommodate everything from large community meetings to small classes and individual use.

    Pedestrian-focused and bicycle friendly

    The publicly accessible spaces throughout the site will prioritize walkways, landscaping, and retail over motor vehicles. Amazon plans to make a significant investment to move all vehicle access underground to foster a safe and welcoming pedestrian environment. Visitors and neighbors will not see service vehicles crossing the new site as all deliveries and docking activity will happen underground, freeing up more space for the community. Additionally, there will be protected bike lanes in the streets and each office building will have dedicated street-level bike entrances and facilities to encourage safe and convenient bicycle commuting to our Arlington headquarters.

    Read more here:
    Amazon unveils design for the second phase of its Virginia HQ - Construction Specifier - The Construction Specifier

    Not Another Future of the Office Article – Propmodo - February 9, 2021 by Mr HomeBuilder

    I know what you are thinking: Not another article about the future of office space?! I get it. This soapbox is getting worn. But you have my promise that I will make every attempt to keep your interest. Generalities will be avoided. Market stats will be kept to a minimum. Instead, I will share with you what I have seen, heard and experienced as a grizzled commercial real estate veteran who has been through so many real estate cycles I keep both Dramamine and TUMS in my desk drawer.

    As you likely already know, the work from home experiment has forced us to adjust quickly and find ways to continue to work productively and efficiently without the support of a traditional office environment. Fortunately, technology provided us with platforms and forums to continue working. By and large, the experiment worked. We are figuring out how to run many businesses without the use of an office.

    But, there is certainly something lost. Saying that just keeping a business running is the same as thriving is like saying I can still run like I did when I was younger, it just takes me much longer to make it around the track. Our work encroached into our personal space abruptly in mid-March last year. This merging of work and personal space has accelerated the changes that were already in progress. A movement toward a new workstyle that allows people to create their own balance between the two. While this can be seen as good news, there are important fundamental factors that cannot be ignored. Lets not forget: there is roughly 4 billion square feet of office space in the United States, worth around $1.7 trillion (pre-pandemic).

    Here I would like to admit my bias, having spent my career working in the real estate industry, representing both commercial tenants and commercial landlords, as well as directly leasing 150,000 square feet as a business owner. What I have learned over these past three decades is that the more things change, the more they stay the same, especially when it comes to office space.

    The media, looking for provocative material, loves to challenge the status quo. Recently remarking, in effect, that office space will no longer serve workers the way it once did. This is true. Office space is always reinventing itself every half decade or so. However, what has never changed is the physical presence of workers occupying the office.

    Pundits have been predicting that everyone will be working from home since the invention of the fax machine and the introduction of overnight mail. That the daily commute will be a thing of the past and that the demand for office space will decrease. As a young executive in the mid-80s, I recall discussing this at lunch over martinis (de rigueur at the time). I remember wondering whether-or-not I had just begun my career in a dying industry.

    During the 1980s and early 1990s even the most junior executive occupied a private windowed office. While the senior executives vied for the larger corner ones. In fact, real estate developers started to design sawtooth floor plates to accommodate more windowed corner offices (think Trump Tower). The few workstations, which they called desks, were occupied by the secretarial pool. The standard density (i.e., the measurement of square footage allocated per employee in the office) during those years was approximately 250 square feet, which also encompassed ones proportionate share of hallways, conference rooms and other common spaces. As office space started to become more expensive, due to both limited new construction and increased demand for space during the early 1990s, density levels started to drop.

    Shortly thereafter, the tech boom happened, pushing density levels down even further. Small startup technology companies were popping up like mushrooms and they have very different views of the office than the traditional occupiers. News stories once again began to appear stating the demise of the office building and the inevitable decrease in demand for office space. Quite the opposite happened.

    By 2000 the average density was down to 185 square feet. College graduates entering the workforce quickly adapted to working elbow to elbow at long tables alongside their colleagues in front of their respective computers. Even with email, instant messaging, the ability to send large files over wires (or then with no wires at all!) and affordable mobile phones, workers still wanted to be together. And, it turned out, that is what the employers and managers wanted as well. The velocity of information within the technology industry was moving so quickly at the time that one would literally be left in the dark if they chose to work from home. Even technology companies wanted to be near other technology companies. Technology clusters formed: Silicon Alley (NYC), Silicon Wadi (Israel), Cambridge Cluster (UK), Greater Seattle, Silicon Hills (Austin) and, of course, the infamous Silicon Valley.

    In addition to industry branding, what these technology hubs had in common were neighborhoods that offered 24/7 work and play. The workers wanted to be together all the time. Tech developers could invent new apps during the day and ad hoc test them at night. Only to return in the morning for more tweaks.

    How did we get here? Technological advancements most definitely helped. There were cultural shifts at play as well. Techies were cultish in their pursuits (they were changing the world after all). This new breed of young professionals wanted to work all the time. Hussle culture took hold as many would brag about working nights and weekends. They would work from anywhere and companies, for the most part, let them.

    The disruptive innovation that companies like Apple, Google and Amazon were able to create with their techie culture made the entire world take notice. In 1995 only 9 percent of the workforce was telecommuting on a regular basis. In 2006 that number grew to 32 percent and has plateaued since then (until March 2020). But remember, telecommuting regularly is not working from home. Before the start of the pandemic less than 3.5 percent of the workforce was working from home full time.

    One of the biggest changes that has happened from our new working arrangements is that there is now no discernable separation of work and our nonwork spaces. This has caused us to further consider the importance of separating our work and nonwork lives. Some of those who are working from home are now even fake commuting to create a sense of separation. A start and a finish. The fake commute might entail a walk around the block in the morning before starting the days work and again at the end of the day to allow for a transition from work to family, friends and/or sports and hobbies. As silly as it sounds, experts warn that, without a distinct separation of work and play, burnout can set in earlier and last for a longer period of time.

    Before the pandemic companies looked for ways to keep its employees in the office for as long as possible. Free lunches were offered to keep employees from leaving the office for any period of time in the middle of the day. Research proved that when colleagues ate lunch together, they spoke about work the majority of the time. Problems were being solved over lunch. Creative ideas were being spit balled (bad choice of words, I know).

    Architects and designers of corporate interiors who delve into the essence of their craft are constantly evolving to serve their clients highest business priorities. For example, by creating a workplace that included inviting lounge vignettes and over sized pantries, workers would inevitably stray from their offices or workstations to grab a coffee, undertake casual business meetings or private conversation. These random walks around the office would create what is referred to as accidental collisions. Random meetings intended to create opportunities for collaboration between the left-brained and the right-brained workers. Individuals who might not otherwise interact in a more conventional office setting. Not only did these interactions boost productivity, they established a more congenial workplace.

    Bloomberg, the New York based multi-billion dollar financial software/media company, is a pioneer in the open landscape workplace, replete with expansive common areas and free food throughout the day. There is not a single private office in its headquarters on Lexington Avenue. Even Michael Bloomberg himself conducts business from his dedicated workstation.

    In early 2013, Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer, convinced of the value of having its employees in the office, banned working remotely. To further make her point, employees had the choice of complying with the edict or quitting. The memo from human resources stated to become the absolute best place to work, communication and collaboration will be important, so we need to be working side-by-side. That is why it is critical that we are all present in our offices. Population density dropped further to approximately 110 square feet.

    Ironically, the technology companies that focused on keeping workers tethered to the office are now talking about permanent work from home scenarios. The thinking changes on a dime. Microsoft announced in October that employees can work from home indefinitely. Facebook is shifting thousands of jobs to remote work. Yet Facebook executed one of Manhattans largest leases of 2020, for 750,000 square feet at the former Farley Post Office behind Penn Station. It isnt that tech companies dont want offices, they just want the best out of the office. I think we will continue to see a lot more finished wood floors, breakout rooms, phone booths, war rooms, sky-lights, exposed brick walls, marble, lounge space, meditation rooms, flawless ventilation and filtration systems, and buildings that can help teach companies how to best utilize them.

    Before the pandemic, corporations were dedicated to culture, brand building, collaboration, mentoring, creativity, efficiency, innovation and productivity. These ideals will not disappear. I expect that business owners and managers will remain intent on keeping their employees and teams working longer in close communication with one another on campus.

    If there is to be a momentous change in workstyle after the pandemic is over, it will likely be towards a need to more clearly define the time dedicated to work versus the time dedicated to our personal lives. But ultimately, its the business owners and the managers who make the decisions about where the employees will work. And while the WFH concept is working during the pandemic it certainly is not likely to prove to be as efficient as working in an office.

    Nor does it provide any social interaction. After all, we are human beings. Human Resource policies notwithstanding, over 50 percent of us have dated someone we work with at the office. In fact, 22 percent of married couples met at work. Come to think of it, after almost a year working from home, maybe some couples are anxious to get back to the office to meet someone else.

    One of the primary drivers these days in building a solid corporate culture is balance. That is: passionate, dedicated work together with physical & mental health, sustainability where possible, diversity and inclusion. Except for those of us with multiple personalities, its hard to find diversity and socialization while home alone.

    Is it really time to overhaul the model? For some companies, yes. But not for all. As the pandemic ends, there will be plenty of empty office space but it wont last forever. Many companies will see lower office prices as an opportunity to upgrade their office to reap all of the benefits that they expect from it.

    As it stands, the most important thing that we can all do now is take the necessary precautions to keep each other safe. Social distancing, working from home, is without question required while riding out the pandemic. Even as the vaccinations roll out, reentering office buildings and other public spaces must be taken with care and the proper precautions. All available resources and energy should be focused on helping those infected and protecting the most vulnerable in every way.

    Yes, some companies may consider reducing their corporate footprint. However, this will be offset somewhat by the need to maintain social distancing within the office. Density may go back up to 250 square feet, temporarily, as it was 30 years ago. Theoretically, office leasing absorption should remain stable, after dipping slightly. However, economic expansion and population growth will continue to drive demand for office space over the long run. And, as the pandemic ends, there will be plenty of room in the existing offices to accommodate the rush back to normalcy. Back to the energy of the office: collaborating, creating, innovating, closing deals while clothed in crisp, clean suits and ties. Thats right! Do not throw out your ties. And, polish up those Manolo Blahniks languishing in the closet. You will don them once again.This is just another cycle, it wont be the first and it wont be the last. So, even after you think we have all of this turbulence behind us, keep the Dramamine and TUMS close by.

    Read more here:
    Not Another Future of the Office Article - Propmodo

    Who’s building where in Acadiana? Here are the building permits issued Jan. 25-29 – The Advocate - February 9, 2021 by Mr HomeBuilder

    New commercial

    STRUCTURE SHELL: 1501 W. Pinhook Road, Lafayette; Campion Devco LLC, owner and applicant; Bayern Group LLC, contractor; $750,000.

    OFFICE BUILDING: 200 Corporate Blvd., Lafayette; SCP Health, owner; John Chase, applicant; C M Miciotto & Son Inc., contractor; $1,189,478.

    OTHER: 200 Corporate Blvd., Lafayette; Schumacher Home Office, owner; description, north wing interior renovation; John Chase, applicant; C M Miciotto & Son Inc., contractor; $758,341.

    GENERAL RETAIL: 3211 Louisiana Ave., 108, Lafayette; Kay/Zales Jewelers, owner; Amy Hodgson, applicant; Jag Building Group Inc., contractor; $190,000.

    OTHER: 3822 Ambassador Caffery Parkway, Lafayette; Englewood Plaza LLC, owner; description, banquet hall assembly The Truss Room; Poche' Prouet Associates, applicant; Southwest Contractors LLC, contractor; $284,000.

    GENERAL RETAIL: 120 E. Gloria Switch Road, Lafayette; Lowes Home Centers Inc. No.618, owner; description, garden center outdoor expansion; Collins and Arnold Construction Co. LLC, applicant and contractor; $180,000.

    OFFICE BUILDING: 2901 Johnston St., No. 200, Lafayette; David Landry, owner; description, Spartan Energy A&M Commerce; James O. Ziler, applicant; Ducharme Brothers Inc., contractor; $51,000.

    WAREHOUSE/SHOP: 1016 SW Evangeline Thruway, Lafayette; Daniel Miller, owner; website error prevented access to information; $6,500.

    OTHER: 4303 Moss St., Lafayette; Sangam Development, owner; Terry Martin, applicant; self, contractor; $0.

    RESTAURANT: 555 Jefferson St., Lafayette; Vestal Restaurant, owner; Ryan Trahan, applicant; Frontline Construction LLC, contractor; $0.

    OTHER: 6412 Ambassador Caffery Parkway, Broussard; Coastal Fire And Ice, applicant; Commercial Construction Co. Inc., contractor; $217,800.

    3113 Riceland Road, Rayne; C Mac Construction; $346,500.

    114 Sparrowhawk St., Broussard; DSLD LLC; $220,500.

    536 Piat Road, Youngsville; Platinum Homes; $486,000.

    101 Ember Grove Crossing, Lafayette; Drenkorp LLC; $270,000.

    219 Emile Drive, Lafayette; Cody Prejean; $436,500.

    305 Manor House Lane, Lafayette; Ray Built Quality Homes LLC; $211,500.

    116 Spider Lily Lane, Lafayette; DSLD LLC; $243,000.

    118 Sparrowhawk St., Broussard; DSLD LLC; $198,000.

    311 Sparrowhawk St., Broussard; DSLD LLC; $189,000.

    106 Grandmark St., Lafayette; DSLD LLC; $283,500.

    129 Croft Row, Lafayette; AM Design Inc.; $270,000.

    109 Grandmark St., Lafayette; DSLD LLC; $234,000.

    217 Lukes Hollow Lane, Lafayette; Shivers Brothers Construction; $166,500.

    107 Grandmark St., Lafayette; DSLD LLC; $265,500.

    221 Treescape Drive, Lafayette; Shivers Brothers Construction; $279,000.

    103 S. Montauban Drive, Lafayette; Becc Enterprises LLC; $315,000.

    207 Redfern St., Lafayette; Lancaster Construction LLC; $274,500.

    223 New Trails Lane, Youngsville; D R Horton Inc. Gulf Coast; $311,500.

    303 New Trails Lane, Youngsville; D R Horton Inc. Gulf Coast; $283,500.

    227 New Trails Lane, Youngsville; D R Horton Inc. Gulf Coast; $301,500.

    305 New Trails Lane, Youngsville; D R Horton Inc. Gulf Coast; $247,500.

    Read the original:
    Who's building where in Acadiana? Here are the building permits issued Jan. 25-29 - The Advocate

    Illustrating the Impact of Project Commodore, Midtown’s Future Tallest Building, on the New York Skyline – New York YIMBY - February 9, 2021 by Mr HomeBuilder

    On the heels of YIMBYs reveal of official renderings forProject Commodore, a 1,646-foot supertall project at 175 Park Avenuein Midtown East, weve collected a number ofillustrations that showcase Midtowns future tallest structures impact on the New York skyline. Designed by Skidmore Owings & Merrilland developed by RXR RealtyandTF Cornerstone, the 83-story skyscraper is planned to rise from the site of the Grand Hyatt New York and yield 500 Hyatt hotel rooms on the upper floors spanning 453,000 square feet; 10,000 square feet of retail space on the ground and cellar levels; and 2.1 million square feet of office space.

    The black-and-white freehand drawing above shows Project Commodore from the northeast set among the Midtown skyline. The setbacks gradually pull back the massing of the edifice further from the edges of its massive footprint, and the tower culminates in a flat roof parapet with crown featuring a lattice of steel columns wrapped in light-colored panels. The rest of the superstructure will largely be enclosed in floor-to-ceiling glass wedged between vertical columns that run nearly the entire height of the 175 Park Avenue from its intricately designed base, which incorporates a similar lattice pattern that would form columns fanning out from each of the four corners. Other completed supertalls featured in the drawing include the Art Deco Chrysler Building to Project Commodores east, Kohn Pedersen Foxs One Vanderbiltto the west, and 30 Hudson Yards rising on the opposite side of the island.

    YIMBY user rgarri4 also recently posted several digital renderings on YIMBYs forum page, showing Project Commodores presence looking north and south as it towers above the Manhattan skyline. The supertall is also joined by nearly every structure currently proposed and under construction. The renderings show the row of new office supertalls along Park Avenue, the Penn District, Manhattan West, Hudson Yards completed first phase, as well as several more towers spread across NoMad and other parts of Midtown. The final rendering is a nighttime view oriented northward with the Chrysler Building and One Vanderbilt illuminated beside it.

    Looking north. Rendering by rgarri4

    Looking north at the entire Midtown skyline. Rendering by rgarri4

    Looking south above Central Park

    Looking north at nighttime. Rendering by rgarri4

    175 Park Avenue is slated to be completed in 2030 if the anticipated 18-month long demolition of the Grand Hyatt New York and actual construction of SOMs supertall goes according to plan. The next step is approval through the Uniform Land Use Review Process that is set to wrap up by the end of this year, followed by a public review in the spring.

    Subscribe to YIMBYs daily e-mail

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    Illustrating the Impact of Project Commodore, Midtown's Future Tallest Building, on the New York Skyline - New York YIMBY

    COVID-19 has given Dallas-Fort Worth one of the highest office vacancies in the nation – The Dallas Morning News - February 9, 2021 by Mr HomeBuilder

    The COVID-19 pandemic that has stalled office leasing has given Dallas-Fort Worth one of the highest office vacancy rates in the country.

    At the end of 2020, D-FW ranked sixth among the countrys highest office vacancy markets, according to the latest survey by commercial property firm Cushman & Wakefield.

    More than 21% of the areas office space was empty at the end of the year up from 18.6% at the close of 2019. Those numbers dont include the more than 9 million square feet of empty sublease office space on the market in North Texas.

    The countrys highest office vacancy was in Fairfield County, Conn., a suburb of New York. Houston was also near the top of the list with a 24.3% vacancy rate, according to Cushman & Wakefield.

    Net office leasing in North Texas declined by almost 5 million square feet in 2020 the biggest drop in decades due to the pandemic, which kept workers at home.

    More than 4 million square feet of office space was under construction in D-FW at the end of 2020. That made it the ninth-busiest metro area for office building in the U.S.

    While a recent increase in North Texas office leasing has caused some optimism in the market, less than 40% of area employees are back to working in the office.

    Real estate analysts are forecasting a slow recovery for the sector. A report by Moodys Analytics is predicting another tough year for office owners, with higher vacancies and lower rents.

    The office sector will suffer more in 2021 than it did in 2020, Moodys researchers said in the report released this week. Moodys projects the vacancy rate will rise to 19.4% this year, surpassing the previous high of 17.6% from 2010, then hold steady in 2022.

    Office rents nationwide arent expected to return to pre-pandemic levels until 2026.

    Though we expect the office sector will suffer more severely in 2021 than it did in 2020, the vaccine rollout brings hope for more in-person business later this year and into 2022, Barbara Denham, senior commercial real estate economist at Moodys Analytics, said in the report.

    Read more:
    COVID-19 has given Dallas-Fort Worth one of the highest office vacancies in the nation - The Dallas Morning News

    Bostons in a lab-building boom. What will that mean for the city and its neighborhoods? – BetaBoston - February 9, 2021 by Mr HomeBuilder

    The second act of 601 Congress which John Hancocks parent, Manulife Financial, sold at the end of 2020 to lab developer BioMed Realty reflects a striking shift in Bostons commercial real estate world, nearly a year into the COVID-19 pandemic. Developers and sometimes owners of existing buildings are turning away from traditional office towers toward life-sciences space, hoping to capture an industry thats growing fast even as stalwart insurance companies and law firms retreat from big offices.

    It really just comes down to fundamentals, said Liz Berthelette, research director at the real estate firm Newmark. Theres more demand in lab market than office at the moment.

    Its a trend that reflects the resilience of Bostons economy: Few cities are so well-positioned to capitalize on a wave of investment in drug-making and research, one thats spilling beyond the industrys longtime home in Cambridges Kendall Square to the Seaport, the Fenway, Watertown, and Somerville.

    But the surge in devloping space for life-sciences companies also highlights the risks of overbuilding to serve one slice of the regions economy. Catering to the needs of such businesses could alter the fabric of the citys dense business districts: With their focus on equipment over cubicles, lab buildings typically hold about half as many workers as a comparably sized office tower. That means fewer customers for restaurants and stores on the streets below.

    The shift also is taking place at a time when the pandemic-forced move toward working from home is causing companies to recalculate how much office space they will need in the long term. The downtown vacancy rate is the highest it has been in a decade. More than 3.5 million square feet the equivalent of several towers is available on the sublease market. The drug industry, however, is booming, with life-sciences firms signing leases at a healthy clip and billions of dollars in venture capital pumping things up even more.

    That has some developers rethinking projects long in the works.

    Oxford Properties, one of Bostons largest traditional-office landlords, had been planning a 24-story office building on the site of a parking garage at 125 Lincoln St., on the edge of the Leather District. In December, Oxford went back to the Boston Planning & Development Agency with a new idea: Build a shorter building, with 14 stories, aimed at technology and life-sciences companies. That would cut the square footage by a third, and probably reduce the buildings daytime population by even more.

    The plan was inspired partly by neighborhood feedback, said Oxford executive vice president Chad Remis. Residents of the Leather District and Chinatown had objected to the idea of a 340-foot tower on the site, which is surrounded by much shorter buildings. But the revision was also inspired by a change in the market for commercial space, he said.

    We build buildings that we believe will meet the demands of society for 30 years from now, not demand two years ago, Remis said. And we believe that research and innovation space will always be in demand.

    Buildings that house labs and tech space have different design requirements than traditional office buildings. For instance, the new plan for 125 Lincoln includes higher ceilings and vast open floors; the lower floors would jut out over an onramp to the Thomas P. ONeill Jr. Tunnel. Heating, cooling, and power systems would be more sophisticated, to handle the demands of tech and research companies.

    This building, per square foot, will cost us significantly more to build, Remis said, though he noted the rents it would command would be higher than for office space.

    When retrofitting existing office buildings, the equation gets even more complicated.

    BioMed is planning a full overhaul of 601 Congress, said vice president Colleen OConnor, converting all but the top two floors into life-sciences space. That will mean finding room within the existing skeleton for a lot of sophisticated mechanical equipment, a design job that OConnor said is already starting. But BioMed has experience on its side it has turned office buildings into lab space before, mostly in Kendall Square.

    OConnor also noted that such renovation has advantages over new construction: chiefly, speed. Permitting and constructing a building from scratch takes years. Swapping out cubicles for lab benches while technically complex can happen a lot faster, and research companies are looking for space now, so the time between renovations being completed and a tenant moving in is relatively short.

    We can have this open by the end of 2022, and theres a real hole in the market there that this building can fill, she said. For us, it was kind of a no-brainer.

    Yet some people worry that more lab space is in the works than the market really needs.

    Yes, demand is strong now, but the amount of lab and life-sciences space thats on track to open in Greater Boston by mid-decade 3 to 4 million square feet annually is four or five times the amount companies here typically fill in a year, said Bob Richards, head of the life-sciences brokerage at Cushman & Wakefield, a real estate firm. And while office-tower construction at least in Boston doesnt typically start without major tenants signed up, buildings aimed at fast-growing drug makers often are started that way. That creates the potential for a glut of partially completed projects without enough tenants to fill them, threatening what today feels like a solid investment.

    There are going to be some winners, and some places that are really going to struggle, Richards said. The pipeline is just stacked.

    There also are questions about what the life-sciences real estate surge might mean for the look and feel of neighborhoods. Because the buildings are typically bulkier and less populated than office towers, the areas around them can appear relatively empty at times.

    Density of people is important, obviously, said architect David Manfredi, founding principal at the Boston architecture firm Elkus Manfredi. It helps support all the places that make a vibrant city. It makes restaurants work. It makes bars work. It makes live music work.

    Manfredi, whose firm has helped the Massachusetts Institute of Technology plan much of its property in Kendall Square and designed many buildings in the Seaport, has been thinking for years about how to make lab districts more lively. He notes that as Kendall Square has developed it has become more of a cultural destination than the strictly-business district it used to be. Other emerging lab districts will evolve along similar lines, he said.

    Such evolution is common, Manfredi noted. He said he sees an example every time he crosses the Boston University Bridge into Cambridge and passes a five-story brick building with a distinctive rounded edge on Memorial Drive.

    It was built in 1913 by Ford Motor Co. as a vertical assembly plant for Model Ts. After Ford moved Model T production to Somerville, Polaroid moved in and made camera parts there for decades. In the 1990s, MIT converted it into lab space, and today the building is largely occupied by the drug giant Sanofi Genzyme. The company will soon move to a new campus Sanofi is building on old railyards in East Cambridge and some other company will probably move in. Whatll they use it for? Who knows?

    Thats the story of this city, Manfredi said. Its still this brick building on the outside, but the inside has been transformed several times. Thats a good thing. Thats the layers of the city, evolving.

    Tim Logan can be reached at Follow him on Twitter at @bytimlogan.

    Read the original post:
    Bostons in a lab-building boom. What will that mean for the city and its neighborhoods? - BetaBoston

    96-Acre Logistics Center with Up to 900,000 Sq. Ft. of Warehouse Space Planned for Curtis Bay – - February 9, 2021 by Mr HomeBuilder

    Kansas Citys NorthPoint Development is planning a 96-acre logistics center with up to 900,000 sq. ft. of warehouse and office space at 1701 E. Patapsco St. in Curtis Bay. NorthPoint acquired an assemblage of former industrial properties that are on the Patapsco River and Stonehouse Cove adjacent to CSX train tracks. The development, called Harbor Logistics Center, will eventually have up to four buildings and large parking lots.

    NorthPoint told Baltimore Business Journal:

    We have been in this business for nearly a decade and know that there has been a lack of development opportunities south of the tunnel, said Brent Miles, a spokesman for NorthPoint, in a statement. We immediately saw the scale and opportunity here with access to the 4th largest [metropolitan statistical area] in the country, proximity and access to CSX rail and the Port of Baltimore. Harbor Logistics Center is going to be the distribution hub here in Baltimore.

    NorthPoint, along with its leasing team at Colliers International and JLL, is currently marketing Building 1 which will be approximately 263,580 sq. ft.

    Building 1 will be 36 ft. tall and have up to four drive-in doors, 24 to 51 loading dock doors, 250 car parking spaces, 39 trailer parking spaces, and a 60 ft. truck court. It has a delivery date of November 2021.

    The brochure also shows Building 2 and Building 3 which would add an approximately additional 441,600 sq. ft. of warehouse and office space to the project.

    NorthPoint was founded in 2012 and has developed 84.5 million sq. ft. for tenants such as, Amazon, Home Depot, Walmart, General Motors Inc., and GE.

    Harbor Logistics Center is located across Stonehouse Cove and around the corner from a development by Scannell Properties. The development will build 522,675 sq. ft. of warehouse space and 58,075 sq. ft. of office space at 4501 Curtis Ave. and 1701 Benhill Ave. This development, which is designed for distribution uses, will have three buildings built in phases. Demolition is currently underway and construction will soon start on the first building.

    NorthPoint is also developing a 950-unit Beyond Self Storage facility in Carroll-Camden.

    Photo and renderings from NorthPoint Development

    View post:
    96-Acre Logistics Center with Up to 900,000 Sq. Ft. of Warehouse Space Planned for Curtis Bay -

    Global EPDM (Ethylene Propylene Diene Monomer) Market Report 2020: Market to Reach $8.7 Billion by 2027 – Focus on Automotive, Building &… - February 9, 2021 by Mr HomeBuilder

    DUBLIN--(BUSINESS WIRE)--The "EPDM (Ethylene Propylene Diene Monomer) - Global Market Trajectory & Analytics" report has been added to's offering.

    Global EPDM (Ethylene Propylene Diene Monomer) Market to Reach $8.7 Billion by 2027

    Amid the COVID-19 crisis, the global market for EPDM (Ethylene Propylene Diene Monomer) estimated at US$6.7 Billion in the year 2020, is projected to reach a revised size of US$8.7 Billion by 2027, growing at a CAGR of 3.8% over the analysis period 2020-2027.

    Automotive, one of the segments analyzed in the report, is projected to record a 3.9% CAGR and reach US$3.2 Billion by the end of the analysis period. After an early analysis of the business implications of the pandemic and its induced economic crisis, growth in the Building & Construction segment is readjusted to a revised 3.3% CAGR for the next 7-year period.

    The U.S. Market is Estimated at $1.8 Billion, While China is Forecast to Grow at 6.9% CAGR

    The EPDM (Ethylene Propylene Diene Monomer) market in the U.S. is estimated at US$1.8 Billion in the year 2020. China, the world`s second largest economy, is forecast to reach a projected market size of US$1.8 Billion by the year 2027 trailing a CAGR of 6.9% over the analysis period 2020 to 2027. Among the other noteworthy geographic markets are Japan and Canada, each forecast to grow at 1.2% and 2.9% respectively over the 2020-2027 period. Within Europe, Germany is forecast to grow at approximately 1.9% CAGR.

    Plastics Segment to Record 4.3% CAGR

    In the global Plastics segment, USA, Canada, Japan, China and Europe will drive the 3.8% CAGR estimated for this segment. These regional markets accounting for a combined market size of US$701.1 Million in the year 2020 will reach a projected size of US$907.5 Million by the close of the analysis period.

    China will remain among the fastest growing in this cluster of regional markets. Led by countries such as Australia, India, and South Korea, the market in Asia-Pacific is forecast to reach US$1.2 Billion by the year 2027, while Latin America will expand at a 5.2% CAGR through the analysis period.

    The report presents concise insights into how the pandemic has impacted production and the buy side for 2020 and 2021. A short-term phased recovery by key geography is also addressed.

    Key Topics Covered:




    Global Competitor Market Shares

    EPDM (Ethylene Propylene Diene Monomer) Competitor Market Share Scenario Worldwide (in %): 2019 & 2025

    Impact of Covid-19 and a Looming Global Recession







    Total Companies Profiled: 44

    For more information about this report visit

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    Global EPDM (Ethylene Propylene Diene Monomer) Market Report 2020: Market to Reach $8.7 Billion by 2027 - Focus on Automotive, Building &...

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