Can Virtual Reality Save Retail?


  • If you build it, they will come. Florida and the Southeast markets dominated the multifamily sector in Q1. Four markets in Florida ranked among the top 15 in the country. Those include Tampa / St. Petersburg, Orlando, Jacksonville, and South Florida.Why Florida? Sunshine, no state income tax, and a thriving job market appear to top the list.


  • Affirmed Housing to tackle the homeless population in San Diego. The LINK is a five-story, 50,000 square foot project that will feature 86 resident units. The goal is to provide “quality housing and on-site supportive services,” said James Silverwood, the President of Affirmed Housing. The LINK is located in the East Village of downtown San Diego.


  • Gym wars? As the multifamily sector continues to flourish, so does the competition. Building owners are looking to on-site fitness centers with the goal of having tenants drop their current gym memberships.


  • A store-within-a-store? In an attempt to draw more customers, Macy’s is unraveling a new experiential concept called, Story. The concept will be centered around “Color,” and will change every 4 to 8 weeks. “Story gives new customers a fresh reason to visit our stores,” said Macy’s CEO Jeff Gennette. Story will debut in 36 locations across the country.


  • A recent forecast study by Gartner is predicting that 100 million consumers around the world will be using augmented reality and virtual reality in a retail context. Up-and-coming 5G mobile networks will help facilitate VR and AR speed and download time.What’s the difference between VR and AR? AR adds digital elements to a live view on your smartphone, while VR is a complete immersion outside of your physical world.


  • Looking for a longer lease? With more and more companies demanding shorter leases, tenants are being forced to reconsider how they’re designing office spaces. One solution proving to be viable is leasing to a co-working tenant such as WeWork. The co-working tenant signs a longer lease and in turn, deals with businesses that want short-term leases.


  • Did you have a skiing simulator in your college dorm? The amenities war in student housing continues, but some developers and school administrators are re-thinking the emphasis on amenities such as the $200k skiing simulators. We may see a shift in more mundane, but necessary amenities such as open spaces with more study rooms. It’s a fine line for developers who are wanting to generate as much revenue as possible.


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