Anticipating an upward trajectory in demand for distribution and storage space, Seagis Property Group plans to invest in more industrial assets in South Florida, a company executive told the Business Journal.
“The acquisitions will come as stresses on the supply chain and the growth of e-commerce companies continue to escalate rates to lease industrial real estate in the region,” said Erin Plourde, senior VP of Seagis Property Group. “The main challenge is industrial is the most appealing asset class these days because of the market demands there. Everyone is chasing industrial.”
Those industrial assets include parking lots. In late December, Seagis paid $9.4 million for a 2.78-acre parking lot at 8100 N.W. 25th St. in Doral. The property is adjacent to the viaduct ramp for trucks transporting cargo from Miami International Airport and can hold at least 74 trailer spaces.
“It was a highly sought asset,” Plourde said. “We want to hold this asset forever. We might construct an industrial warehouse there in the future.”
Later this year, Seagis will break ground on the construction of a 200,000-square-foot warehouse facility that will be called the Seagis Port Logistics Center, at 1700 Eller Drive, near the Fort Lauderdale/Hollywood International Airport. Seagis paid $29.5 million for the land, a former Alamo Rent a Car center, in December.
“We have developed in other areas, but this is our first development project in South Florida,” Plourde said. “We are very excited about that.”
Headquartered in Conshohocken, Pennsylvania, Seagis has a portfolio of 12 million square feet of industrial properties across New Jersey, New York and South Florida.
In the past year alone, the company invested $238 million buying up logistic assets, with $121 million of those acquired assets being within South Florida. Today, the company owns 111 buildings in the area, which equates to 6 million square feet of industrial space. Plourde said her company wants to add to that inventory and doesn’t plan to sell off any more of its industrial assets.
According to a recent Colliers study, multiple factors have driven demand for industrial space into overdrive, with vacancies plummeting and asking rates rising throughout South Florida. In Miami-Dade, storage and distribution space leased for an average of $10.98 a square foot in the last quarter of 2021, an increase of 12.97% from the previous year. In Broward, average rates are $9.18 a foot, up 10.13% from the previous year.