Daily News for Commercial Real Estate & Business – January 7, 2010

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

Ken Riggs Updates CIRE Forecast

Is transaction activity going to take hold in 1Q10? What properties are investors looking at in the broader market? Real estate expert Kenneth P. Riggs, CCIM, discusses the fine points of his 2010 commercial real estate forecast in this follow-up podcast. Read Ken’s article in the January/February 2010 issue of Commercial Investment Real Estate magazine.

Click here to listen to the podcast.

To view this week’s Costar Watch List, click here. The first article, “Commercial Real Estate in 2010: Liquidity Still Dried Up,” is a good quick read.

Romano’s Macaroni Grill Changes Hands in Goodyear

Cardinal Capital Partners sold the Romano’s Macaroni Grill at 1828 N. Litchfield Road in Goodyear, AZ, for $2.34 million, or $343 per square-foot, to private investors.

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Village Square II Sells for $14.5M

Lynn Morrison LLC, a Tucson-based commercial real estate leasing and property management company, acquired the Village Square II retail center in Phoenix from The Macerich Co. for $14.5 million, or $108 per square foot.

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Government Agency Takes 17,000 SF in Phoenix

The Hearing Office for Social Security Administration has leased 16,623 square feet of office space at 18444 N. 25th Ave. in Phoenix for 15 years. The government agency plans to occupy the space in June.

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Healthcare Trust Closes on 641,000 SF

SUN CITY, AZ-Healthcare Trust of America Inc. started out the new year with a bang, paying $107 million to Roskamp Management Co. LLC for its 17-asset medical office building portfolio.

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Four new restaurants open in downtown Tempe

A burger so hip it made ‘GQ’ magazine. A sandwich shop with Midwest roots. A spot for 24-hour chow, and a reopened bistro and bar that spotlights food from around the nation.

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Mesa mayor hopes to attract more colleges to city

The people who flowed to Arizona by the millions from frontier days through the postwar rush to urbanize neglected to bring one critical thing with them:

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Phoenix streamlines development process

The Phoenix City Council recently approved several programs aimed at streamlining the development process. The approvals include expansion of the Adaptive Reuse Program, a self-certification program for building plan review, code changes to make it easier to jump start stalled projects, and an action plan to enhance the consistency among city inspectors.

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Real Estate chat with attorney Christopher Combs

Christopher Combs of Combs Law Group, a real estate attorney, answered your questions on residential and commercial real estate in a live chat Jan. 6, 2009. Combs writes a weekly question-and-answer column on real estate that appears on Wednesdays in the Business section of The Arizona Republic.

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Goodyear moves to ‘solarize’ in 2010

Goodyear and the West Valley are sprouting green technology as the buzz about renewable energy grows.

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REITs Look to Return to Their Retail Roots

The fast-money crowd has been moving more heavily into real-estate investment trusts, replacing small-time investors as the industry’s major shareholders. But companies are vowing to win back the little guy.

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Shopping Malls vs. Strip Centers: Where to Shop for Stock Gains

Real-estate companies that own shopping malls ranked among the best-performing stocks in 2009 – and the worst-performing, too.

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Restaurant industry sees signs of light

NEW YORK (Jan. 6, 2010) Two recent surveys forecast a slightly sunnier picture for the year ahead among both consumers and franchise business leaders, providing a glimpse of clearer skies for the restaurant industry.

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CMBS Delinquencies Rise to All-Time High in December, But Bond Spreads Narrow

Call it the winter of discontent for the troubled U.S. commercial mortgage-backed securities (CMBS) market. The loan delinquency rate climbed 42 basis points in December to reach 6.07%, making history in the process.

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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.