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Saturday, March 28, 2009

More high-rise karma

Another soulless tower in Moyertown finds itself with lots of vacancy.

Comments (10)

Not to be too nitpicky, but isn't Harsch Investment owned by the Schnitzers, not the Moyers? And I think the Pacific First Center is nearly full, save for the street level space on the Broadway side being remodeled for Zell's?

11,000 square feet is a lot of empty space.

Anything within the shadow of Moyer's tower is Moyertown.

What I do hate about the Fox Tower is that it puts Pioneer Courthouse Square in afternoon shadow for 9 months of the year. I just didn't realize the square was in "Moyertown".

Moyer's granddaughter is always a "delight" to deal with....

Gary Swank Jewelry was displaced by this remodel. He told me how outrageous the rent was going to cost (I forget the number, but it was millions per year), and said he didn't see how they could possibly sell enough product to justify it.

I don't understand why condo builders, subsidized hotel builders (The Nines), and property managers are all targeting some sort of limitless "luxury" market.

There's a HUGE market for affordable housing and struggling businesses looking for leases they can afford in order to prosper and grow. And nobody is building or providing for that market.

Did the owners of The Nines REALLY think that they could ask $250 and up per night for a room in downtown Portland, Oregon? Do the condo builders really think that there are tens of thousands of wealthy people moving here to buy into small, expensive condos with high monthly maintenance fees? Would the owners of commercial property rather their storefronts remained papered and closed than lower their "market rate" rental and lease rates? Does the city think it is doing local hoteliers or taxpayers a favor by pushing a convention hotel that will take money and business away from both? A hotel that is supposed to bring convention business to Portland when the presence of an actual convention center surrounded by hotels in the Lloyd district hasn't been able to do so?

I just don't get it.

NW Portlander,

When city planners drive up the cost of doing anything with onerous regulations and a lengthy permitting process, the only things worth doing are things for the wealthy.

As a small business owner for the past 20 years; I'm always amazed at the absurd leasing rates some property management weasels continue to "think" they will get in the middle of a recession. When the vacancy rates go over the 10% range, at least a few of these people will change their tune - but not many.

"but not many"

and thats because they have a reserve that they will fraudulently drain dry while tarped banks concentrate on scamming the treasury. rope and lampposts.

Dave A., I've been noticing the same thing as of late. I just watched several long-running businesses in my neighborhood shut down because the owners decided to double the rent, and the businesses were barely squeaking by on the old rent. I'm not sure about Oregon law, but I know that a lot of Texas property management companies make as much off tax writeoffs by keeping a place empty than they make off rent. When that happens, they have no incentive to lower or stabilize rents, and they'd actually make more by driving off tenants who'd actually expect upgrades or repairs during a recession.

As for the jewelry retailer bailing out, I can't say that I'm surprised. Anybody in the business, and my wife manages a store, will tell you that everyone's paying for the overemphasis on diamonds over the last twenty years. Diamonds right now have almost no resale value because they're nowhere near as rare as DeBeers wanted us to believe (rubies and emeralds are much better investments these days, if you're so inclined), and years of foisting yellow, green, and black diamonds (which in previous years would have been used for drill bits) just poisoned the well further. The big chain Robbins Brothers just declared Chapter 11 bankruptcy, and everyone in the business is figuring that Zales won't survive the summer. Either way, with so many chains shutting down and selling off inventory, it's going to be miserable for the survivors for the next five years or so.

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