Commercial Real Estate & Business News – March 29, 2016

Hundreds of thousands of Americans are streaming back into an improving labor market as employers raise wages and hire less skilled job candidates to cope with an intensifying worker shortage. The portion of the U.S. population working or looking for jobs — known as the labor force participation rate — has risen to 62.9% from 62.4% since September, Labor Department figures show. The rate had been falling since 2008, mostly because of baby boomer retirements… Read more »
Communities where folks live, work and play has been the foundation from which the West Valley has grown, but many West Valley residents have been left out of the fun as they spend a large amount of time commuting to the East Valley for work. WESTMARC and its new CEO Sintra Hoffman hope to change that for West Valley residents as WESTMARC gears up to bring more high-paying jobs, and, in turn, more development to the west side of the Valley… Read more »
Optima Inc. — the development and architectural firm known for its upscale hanging garden style multifamily developments in Scottsdale — has started construction on its latest project next to Kierland Commons and Scottsdale Road. The Optima Kierland project is starting its first phase of construction on a 12-story, 220-unit condominium building and a 10-story, 155-unit apartment complex… Read more »
The properties at 420 and 501 S. Mill Ave. encompass a 15,460-square-foot site at the northwest corner of Mill Avenue and 5th Street, the primary intersection for dining, shopping and entertainment in the trade area. The 39,979-square-foot two-property portfolio has sold for a combined sale price of $13.8 million… Read more »
A year after Banner Health bought the financially troubled University of Arizona Health Network, the Phoenix-based hospital system plans to spend big to bolster its academic medicine efforts. Banner will invest nearly $1 billion in clinics and new teaching-hospital towers in Tucson and Phoenix, and offices for managers and department leaders at the Tucson hospital tower, officials said. The Banner-UA deal, completed in March 2015, requires the Phoenix-based health system spend… Read more »