Retail has been getting a lot of coverage in the media. While retail activity is seen as one of the bellwethers of the national economy, we in the real estate industry are also concerned with issues that surround the future of brick and mortar retail locations. Demand for logistics and warehouse sites and last mile locations has surged dramatically as the e-commerce sector has taken off. KN has been engaged in all aspects of these changes including large distribution centers, e-commerce company fulfillment centers, and the realignment of many national brand headquarters.
Online consumer and wholesale markets are continuing to change rapidly to allow for sales to continue without interruption. We are working with The RealReal and their online luxury consignment shopping experience. We recently completed a 492,000 sf warehouse conversion in Perth Amboy, an assignment that is now being replicated in Phoenix, Arizona as a 593,000 sf warehouse conversion. The buildings are completely reworked to manage the flow of consignment items, and include everything needed for an online retail facility from massive photo studios to specialists doing watch repair.
We recently completed a relocation of Rue Gilt Groupe from the Brooklyn Navy Yard back to Midtown NY, bringing over their ecommerce photography and modeling facilities. KN has also been retained for a new headquarters assignment for the Betesh Group, a leading manufacturer and distributor of baby and home products. Our recently completed headquarters for retail marketing consultants LG&P in Paramus is pictured above.
The Vitamin Shoppe previously retained our firm that included architecture, interiors, procurement, and branding teams for their multi-phase relocation from North Bergen to Secaucus, a four floor 92,000 sf requirement.
For SPARC (Simon Properties Retail Concepts) we are planning a headquarters location in midtown, including space for the company’s retail brands Nautica, Brooks Brothers, Aeropostale, and Lucky Jeans.
This assignment is a follow up to redeployment work for Aeropostale and Nautica over the past years in other locations in the city as well as the design of Aero’s 70,000 sf operations center in Lyndhurst, NJ. For all these groups, combining their strong e-commerce presence with brick and mortar stores is still critical, and the spaces we are planning include mock-stores, showrooms and work areas for Merchandising, Design, Product Development, Planning, Wholesale and Marketing all under one roof.
So despite this overall year of radical change, the retail market continues to thrive in new and interesting ways, and KN is fully engaged by many clients in this field due to our experience, track record, and long term relationships with many of these firms. This is one of our many consistent themes over 30-years. As our clients modify and change, we are a critical component of their team in managing the physical side of their transformation.