Hines Signs Sino Biological as a Tenant at Levit Green

a 53Ac Life Science District in Houston

Hines, a global real estate investment, development, and property manager, in partnership with 2ML Real Estate Interests and Harrison Street, announced a lease at Levit Green, the new 53-acre mixed-use life science district adjacent to the Texas Medical Center in Houston, Texas. Sino Biological, Inc., an international reagent supplier and service provider, has leased approximately 10,000 square feet of commercial lab and office space in Levit Green’s first phase, which is slated for completion at the end of this year.

Headquartered in Beijing, China with subsidiaries in Suzhou, China; Taizhou, China; Frankfurt, Germany; and Wayne, Pennsylvania and listed on the Shenzhen stock exchange subsidiary ChiNext (SZSE: 301047), Sino Biological is the world’s leading provider of mammalian cell-based recombinant proteins, antibodies and related contract research services. This new site serves as the company’s first US-based manufacturing facility. Referred to as the Center for Bioprocessing (C4B), the facility will focus on both product manufacture and the implementation of contract research services. Levit Green will further establish its presence in Houston, providing companies, academics, and medical researchers in the world-renowned Texas Medical Center and across the region invaluable access to Sino Biology’s comprehensive offering of bioreagents and CRO services.

To meet the market’s need for immediate lab-ready space, Hines is also delivering two commercial lab and office turn-key suites, at 11,000 square feet and 7,000 square feet, which will be ready for occupancy by Summer 2023. This in-demand laboratory offering will give potential tenants the flexibility to accommodate constantly evolving science needs. The turn-key suites have been designed to an optimal 60%-40% lab-to-office ratio, to accommodate any wet or dry lab R&D use, such as biology, chemistry, and engineering.

Building I at Levit Green—a 290,000-square-foot, five-story building with wet lab and incubator space—is part of the broader nine-building Levit Green masterplan, which will offer a curated mix of research facilities, office, retail, residential, and outdoor amenities. It is equipped with 100% redundant emergency power, enhanced structural vibration attenuation, augmented mechanical systems, 33-foot structural bay depths, and floorplates of more than 60,000 square feet. Additionally, the building will feature best-in-class amenities that include a 5,800-square-foot fitness center and outdoor garden, a 7,000-square-foot conference center, 3,500 square feet of café and restaurant space, and ample on-site parking. The ground floor plan is also programmed to accommodate more than 25,000 square feet of lab incubator space which will provide entrepreneurs and early-stage life science companies with top-tier, strategically located laboratory and office space.

Building I is slated for completion in late 2022, with Sino Biological’s occupancy anticipated for the Q3 2023. JLL represented Levit Green in the lease.

Still Quitting? Waiters and Fast-food Workers are Seeking Greener Pastures

Fast-food workers, chefs and waiters are quitting their jobs at a faster rate than are any other workers, according to a study released last week.

The study, from document-management tool SmallPDF, analyzed numbers from the Bureau of Labor Statistics to score every industry’s quit rates, the percentage of total workers quitting an industry every month, and quit levels, a measurement of how many employees quit in total each month.

According to SmallPDF, the accommodation and food services industry saw an average of 5.8% of its workforce quit between April and August of 2022, the period in which the study was done. That industry includes chefs, waiters and fast-food workers.

More than 773,600 of these employees left every month on average during SmallPDF’s study. In August of 2022, 128,000 more workers in the accommodation and food services industry left their jobs than did during the same month a year earlier. It’s little surprise, then, that fast-food and other restaurants are struggling to hire enough workers.

In second place in the survey was the retail trade industry, which includes jobs such as customer-service representatives, cashiers and stock clerks. An average of 600,400 employees quit these jobs every month from April to August of 2022. In good news for this sector, though, about 109,000 fewer employees quit these jobs this August compared to the same month in 2021.

The arts, entertainment and recreation industry ranked third on the list, a sector that includes fitness trainers, recreation attendants and musicians. About 7,000 more employees quit these industries in August of 2022 compared to August of 2021.

Fourth place goes to the professional and business services industry, including lawyers, accountants and architects. About 754,000 employees quit every month between April and August. The quit rate was, on average, 3.36% during these months. In a sign that workers are holding onto their jobs a bit more in these fields, August 2022’s quit number came in at 63,000 fewer employees than the quit level of August 2021.

Rounding out the top five is the transportation, warehousing and utilities industry, which includes pilots, bus drivers and truck drivers. An average of 199,400 quits took place in these industries every month from April and August of this year. August 2022’s quit level in these industries came in at 32,000 employees higher than August 2021’s level.

“Forethought and Intentionality” Developers Turn to Mixed-Use

Developers Turn to Mixed-use Developments to Fill Community Needs

It’s difficult to fully explain the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on commercial real estate. It changed consumer behavior in such a significant way, every sector was impacted in one way or another. Some, such as industrial, were strengthened, while sectors such as office and retail were forced to adapt to survive. Multifamily also saw a boom as it evolved to answer the needs of its residents, reinforcing a model that’s been growing in popularity: mixed-use developments.

“There has been a big push for live-work-play and mixed-use communities over the past decade, fueled by a number of factors including a preference for many professionals to live and work in the same community, which significantly reduces commute time to and from work,” said Srinath Pai Kasturi, Executive Vice President of Cadence McShane, which is recognized as one of the largest multifamily builders in the nation.

He added that since the pandemic, the trend of working from home is more of a reality now than it has ever been.

“Although many companies are currently requiring employees to report back to work in person, most companies have recognized certain efficiencies with remote workplaces and are allowing for some type of hybrid model in order to attract and retain top talent,” Kasturi said. “In response to this, developers are building communities that cater to new resident preferences by offering a more holistic community environment where residents can enjoy the most common amenities at their fingertips, with additional amenities including transit, retail, and entertainment all within walking distance.” Click to read more at www.rednews.com.

Working While Traveling? Marriott has a Space for You

Travelers tend to do a lot of work on their trips these days. This isn’t surprising: With so many people still working from home, it’s all too easy for vacationers to slip into work mode for an hour or two — or more — a day, even while they’re supposed to be lying on the beach, sitting by a fireplace or touring a national park.

This is why one of the globe’s biggest hoteliers is now introducing a product that provides travelers with more space on their stays, enough space, even, to set up their laptops and screens for a bit of mid-vacation work.

Marriott International on Nov. 9 announced that it is expanding into apartment-style accommodations with the launch of Apartments by Marriott Bonvoy. In a press release announcing this move, Marriott writes that it is responding to growing demand from families and other travelers who want more space in their vacation accommodations. This demand, Marriott says, stems from the blending of work and leisure travel.

Marriott already has 26 years of experience with its Marriott Executive Apartments brand, its apartment brand in Asia, Europe, the Middle East, Africa and Latin America. With the introduction of Apartments by Marriott, the company is now bringing what it calls its service-apartment concept to the United States and Canada.

“Travelers planning vacations and long business trips today are seeking more choice in accommodations,” said Stephanie Linnartz, president of Marriott International, in a written statement.

Marriott is launching Apartments by Marriott Bonvoy in its upper-upscale and luxury segments,something that will set it apart from Marriott’s existing extended-stay brands.

Apartments by Marriott Bonvoy will feature a separate living room and bedroom, full kitchen and in-unit washer and dryer, but will be differentiated from Marriott’s existing extended-stay brands by not providing certain traditional hotel services such as food and beverage, meeting spaces and retail.

Apartments by Marriott Bonvoy will offer developers the opportunity to build new properties or convert existing properties, with a design approach similar to the company’s successful Autograph Collection and Tribute Portfolio lodging brands.

Marriott says that today’s travelers are seeking premium accommodations that provide home-like amenities as they combine work and leisure trips. According to Phocuswright research, three of the top five reasons for selecting an apartment-style rental are more room or space, access to a full kitchen and laundry and home-like feel.

What to do with Outdated Office Space? Turn it Into Apartments

Plenty of outdated office buildings dot cities across the country. Their number has only increased since the start of the pandemic: Companies, which are seeing more of their employees work from home, don’t need as much office space. When they do make a move, they’re seeking higher-quality Class-A space, leaving all those Class-C buildings with rising vacancies.

What to do with these unwanted office buildings? Many developers are converting them to apartment units. And according to the latest research from Yardi Matrix, this trend is showing no signs of slowing.

Yardi Matrix reports that the number of apartment conversions jumped by 25% in 2020 and 2021 when compared to 2018 and 2019. These conversions brought 28,000 new rentals to the country during the last two years. That’s a big jump from the 22,300 apartment conversions the country saw in 2018 and 2019.

This increase in apartment conversions has been especially strong in big cities. This isn’t surprising: There’s a serious shortage of apartment units in most major U.S. cities. Demand for multifamily units far outpaces their supply in these metropolitan areas.

What is surprising is how the increase in conversions compares to the rate of growth of new apartment construction. Yardi Matrix found that adaptive reuse apartments grew faster than new apartments by a count of 25% to 10% during that same 2020 and 2021 timeframe.

Office-to-apartment conversions grew at an even faster rate, jumping by 43% during 2020-2021 when compared to 2018 and 2019. In raw numbers, the country saw 11,090 apartments created from former office space in 2020 and 2021 compared to 7,762 in 2018 and 2019.

The number of office-to-apartment conversions in 2020 and 2021 represent an all-time high. Former offices made up 40% of all adaptive-reuse conversions to rentals in 2020 and 2021, again a record high.

“The residential market needs significantly more density in the areas of the largest cities, where the demand is greatest and where the tallest office buildings are located,” said Doug Ressler, manager of business intelligence at Yardi Matrix. “Existing building architecture is the critical starting point. Not all buildings are equally threatened by the work-from-home revolution. Larger office buildings in abandoned central business districts are better suited to conversion than the often-smaller office complexes distributed around the suburbs.”

Washington D.C. leads the nation in the number of apartment conversions, with 1,565 in 2020 and 2021. In the Midwest, Chicago tops this list, with 1,139 conversions during the same period, good for third-highest in the nation. Cleveland came in fourth in the nation with 837 conversions, while Kansas City, Missouri, took the ninth spot with 568 conversions.

Colliers Mortgage Closes Fannie Mae Loan for The Edmond in Waco

Fritz Waldvogel of Colliers Mortgage’s Minneapolis office closed a Fannie Mae loan for a repeat client for the refinancing of The Edmond in Waco, Texas. The 124-unit market rate property was constructed in 1967 and includes 10 two-story garden-style buildings and two one-story maintenance/storage buildings. Community amenities include a courtyard, BBQ/picnic area, covered parking, on-site management, pool, package receiving, clothes care center, on-site maintenance, and surveillance camera system.

The loan was arranged through a partnership with Old Capital Lending and carries a 10-year term.

Fritz Waldvogel of Colliers Mortgage’s Minneapolis office closed a Fannie Mae loan for a repeat client for the refinancing of The Edmond in Waco, Texas. The 124-unit market rate property was constructed in 1967 and includes 10 two-story garden-style buildings and two one-story maintenance/storage buildings. Community amenities include a courtyard, BBQ/picnic area, covered parking, on-site management, pool, package receiving, clothes care center, on-site maintenance, and surveillance camera system.

The loan was arranged through a partnership with Old Capital Lending and carries a 10-year term.