September 29, 2016

In a new feature story for Midwest Real Estate News, HSA Commercial Real Estate’s Bob Smietana outlines some of the key competitive advantages southeast Wisconsin has in the so-called “border wars” with Illinois. In the article, Bob points to the relatively lower taxes, pro-business environment, and meaningful public-private partnerships as contributing factors in the migration of Illinois businesses north of the border. As a result, the I-94 corridor between Chicago and Milwaukee has seen a flurry of development activity to correspond with the numerous industrial businesses seeking economic stability in Wisconsin.

“We are seeing more spec development than we’ve seen in a long time,” [Smietana] said. “Demand is keeping up with the spec that is being put up, too. Southeast Wisconsin has never been viewed as a major market, but it is becoming just that with the amount of industrial space being built. The good economic and social dynamics that make this a good market just can’t be ignored.”

The principals at HSA Commercial pioneered the growth of the southeast Wisconsin market with the development of the 184-acre Park 94 project in 2008. In 2010, Naples, Italy-based Seda International Packaging Group purchased a 323,610-square-foot building at 12501 Globe Drive in Park 94 to serve as its North American manufacturing and distribution center. HSA Commercial recently announced a long-term lease renewal with AllStates Trucking for half of the adjacent 125,000-square-foot multi-tenant industrial facility which remains fully-leased. Park 94–located just 15 miles north of the Illinois-Wisconsin border in Pleasant Prairie–is slated to offer additional warehouse and distribution facilities as part of subsequent phases.

“There is a certain amount of supply that is required in this sector every year,” Smietana said. “What we are seeing, even with the amount of spec being built, is that we are not even close yet to the amount of industrial space that was available on average in 2005 and 2007. We haven’t even approached that. So the supply is still not enough for demand in this market.”

To read the full interview with Bob Smietana, please visit the Midwest Real Estate News website.

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