Friday, February 5, 2016

Live-Work-Play Opportunities Keep Graduates In Philadelphia

by Steve Lubetkin,
Developers are seeing live-work-play opportunities that can keep recent university graduates interested in remaining in the cities where they completed their educations, according to Dustin Downey, senior vice president of multifamily development, Southern Land Company, one of the panelists featured at ALM’s RealShare Philadelphia Conference February 9 at the historic Union League Club.
Downey’s firm, Southern Land Company, has recently developed 3601 Market, a 28 story mixed-use apartment complex in Philadelphia’s University City submarket. Downey will participate in the “Live Work Play” panel at RealShare Philadelphia.

“Traditionally, the areas surrounding colleges and universities were ideal targets for developers looking to take advantage of the booming undergraduate student market,” Downey tells exclusively. “As more and more cities push to create 24/7 hubs where students can live, work and play, however, some developers are seeing new opportunities to cater to the young professional set. 3601 Market is doing just that. Rather than cater to the approximately 27,000 Drexel undergrad and UPenn undergraduates, the project is attracting young professionals — junior faculty, office workers and young doctors — to live in University City.”

Cities like Philadelphia are also benefiting from increasing interest from empty-nesters, Downey says.

“Cities are seeing a Baby Boom as the boomer generation gravitates towards cities like Philadelphia with a preference for areas that will put them in closer contact with millennials,” he says. “Today’s boomers are seeking more active lifestyles in retirement than ever before.”

The “Live, Work, Play: The Areas Teeming with Activity” panel, also will include panelists José Cruz, senior managing director at HFF; Paul Garvey, senior director, Cushman & Wakefield; and Bradley J. Korman, co-chief executive officer, Korman Communities. Moderating the panel is Timothy J. Touhey, senior vice president, Investors Bank.

With rents on the rise in trophy-class and class-A properties along with dropping vacancies, Philadelphia seems to be a landlord’s market. In addition to out-of-town investors making their mark in the city, panelists will discuss factors that continue to drive the mixed use sectors and what particular areas are teeming with activity. Among the trends expected to be discussed are coworking, incubator spaces, and crowd-funding—and how they play into the most bustling areas.

The panel is scheduled to start at 10:15 a.m. The conference kicks off Tuesday, February 9 at 7:30 am at the Union League Club, 140 South Broad Street, Philadelphia.

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