Thursday, September 11, 2008

Lots going on in the Leominster commercial real estate market

Have you driven around Leominster lately and seen all that is going on with respect to commercial development? There's quite a bit of new office and retail space coming on the market in Leominster.

Here's a rundown of some of the exciting projects you've most likely either seen or heard about.

Whitney Place - 40 Spruce St

This is Jim Whitney's latest redevelopment project and it looks like it's a great one. Jim bought one of the most dilapidated, run-down properties in a "not-so-good" area and is giving it new life as a hub for small businesses. The landscaping has been redone, the parking area re-paved and actually brought up several feet to take away the industrial/loading dock look of the front of the building. Rents are likely to be in the $10/SF range and I know of at least one company that has already moved in and another that is in the process of moving in so Jim's off to a good start.

Red Cross - 114 Merriam Ave

I wrote previously about this project and since my last post the project has received full approval from the planning board and the house that housed the Red Cross for so many years is going to be taken down in the coming weeks and possibly days. Marc Albert will be constructing a 10,000 SF office building with suites available for sale or for lease. This location is perfect for attorneys, doctors, and other professionals. Pricing should come in around the high teens and purchase prices on the units should be somewhere between $200 - $250 / Square foot. Not bad if you consider the alternatives in the area to buy a 2,500 SF office suite...

Lancaster St from Gateway to Union Products

There are two mixed use petitions in front of the city now for the Gateway Business Center owned by Steve Boucher and an adjacent property owned by Dave Mullaney and Barry Cosimi. Steve's property, Gateway Business Center, is a renovated mill that is near full occupancy but he is looking to more or less solidify it's existence in my opinion allowing for a broader range of tenants to round out the mix of businesses that already occupy the property.

Dave and Barry own several buildings adjacent to Gateway and are looking for approval to construct a retail building out by the intersection of Lancaster St and Viscoloid Ave. By way of a mixed use ordinance, they are looking for approval to use 30% (I believe) of their property for retail/commercial. The existing tenants are all industrial businesses. This location is great for a pharmacy or restaurant, or any other retail establishment looking for good traffic counts and high visibility.

Just next door is Jimmy Xarras' project which is the former Union Products building. Development here has been limited for the most part to the interior of the building and personally, I'd like to see something done to the exterior and to the area along Lancaster St. I think until the curb appeal is addressed, the project won't take off as a commercial development. He does have the benefit of low rents and the ability to finance tenant fit-up which is always important to small businesses. Jim has already received his approval for mixed-use so I'm anxious to see some action over there.

Other Opportunities in Leominster

What else is going on in Leominster these days with respect to new commercial development? Do you want info on any of these projects or any others in the area? Are you considering relocating to Leominster from outside the area or possibly just relocating within Leominster? Have you considered consulting with a real estate professional?

Give me a call or send me an email. If you have any info on other projects around town feel free to share them with me by commenting below.

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