Daily News for Commercial Real Estate & Business – December 18, 2009

Here are the news stories you might find interesting today regarding commercial real estate and business:

To view this weeks “The Watch List,” by Costar, click here. The first article, “Updated: CMBS Activity: A Passing Heat Wave or a Lasting Warming?” is a great quick read. It points our recent CMBS activity and one person states that they predict 7-10 year money to become competitive again.

$57M orthopedic hospital planned for site near Sky Harbor

United Surgical Partners International Inc. is beginning construction this week on $57 million orthopedic specialty hospital that will employ 140 people when it opens in January 2011.

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Beaudry RV lays off 51 workers

Beaudry RV said Thursday it has laid off 51 employees at its two dealerships in Chandler and Tucson due to a slump in recreational-vehicle sales.

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Nutrition firm establishes home base in Valley

FreeLife International, a direct-sales nutritional company that operates in 26 countries, has established its world headquarters in Phoenix.

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Land swap for mine near Superior advances in Senate

If remaining hurdles are passed, development would be North America’s largest copper mine.

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Mesa starts $9.4 million Gateway-area road project

With 10 shovelfuls of dirt and soaring paeans to the future, Mesa kicked off construction this week on a $9.4 million road project designed to ignite development in the Gateway area.

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Gateway Airport will acquire about 17 acres of land

Phoenix-Mesa Gateway Airport is gaining ground in exchange for relinquishing easement to more than 35 acres of property.

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Old Town Revitalization Plan is OK’d by Peoria City Council

The Peoria City Council unanimously approved the Old Town Revitalization Plan at Tuesday’s meeting.

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Phoenix Greyhound Park to close

For decades, fans have headed to Phoenix Greyhound Park for the thrill of wagering on dog races. That tradition ends this month.

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Arizona jobless rate down in November

Arizona’s jobless rate dropped in November, and the state’s addition of 12,800 jobs in the month could indicate the worst of the recession’s job losses are in the past.

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ASU Repeat Sales Index: Home prices picking up

The latest housing market research from Arizona State University shows Phoenix-area home prices are rising.

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Valley new home sales surge last month

New home sales increased last month across the Valley as buyers raced to beat the original deadline to take advantage of the federal first-time homebuyer tax credit, according to the latest report from local analyst RL Brown.

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Imploded Phoenix building to be featured on new TLC reality show ‘The Imploders’

Rubble. That’s all that remains of what was once the10-story old Qwest building at Third Street and Earll Drive in Phoenix. On Sept. 27, hundreds of people watched the Al Beadle designed structure’s demise.

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Economic reports point to gradual recovery

WASHINGTON – A report on unemployment claims and a forecast of U.S. economic activity pointed Thursday to an economy mending slowly, without the job growth needed to fuel a vigorous recovery.

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Mitchell a key vote in cram-down’ battle

U.S. Rep. Harry Mitchell, D-Ariz., has become one of the key swing votes determining the fate of “cram-downs,” which would allow federal bankruptcy judges to adjust mortgage rates, terms and principal.

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Banks to Spend 2010 Coping with Commercial Mortgage Maturities

As billions of dollars in commercial debt comes due over the next two years, with many loans originated from 2005 to 2008 underwater, the need for capital will skyrocket. Of the $3.5 trillion in commercial mortgage debt outstanding, more than $1.1 trillion is needed to service that debt. That’s according to a new 2010 forecast from New York-based financial analyst Keefe, Bruyette & Woods (KBW).

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REGISTER ASAP! THERE IS A LIMITED NUMBER OF TICKETS AVAIALBLE FOR THIS EVENT! Just a reminder: I am a panelist for the CCIM/IREM Economic Forecast on January 12, 2010. It is at the Phoenix Country Club and starts at 8AM. I will be on the Retail Panel with Daniel Pollack and Kevin Schuck. Our moderator is David Malin from Vestar. If you are in town, please come support me at the event. The website to register is

Feel free to contact me regarding any of these stories, the current market, distressed commercial real estate opportunities or your property.

Wishing you a Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!