Monthly Archives: March 2014

Faber Place Office Building Sold at $169/SF (UPDATE)

A modest mid-rise office building in Faber Place Office Park off Leeds Avenue and I-526 sold in mid-March at a recorded price of $9,600,000, but the effective price was more like $10.5M, or just shy of $170/sf.  Traded at a very strong cap rate, reflective of it being anchored by the GSA and and one very large aircraft manufacturer, plus a couple of small tenants.  No article.

BMW’s Upstate Expansion Positively Impacts Lowcountry/CHS

BMW’s announcements to invest another $1B in the Upstate near Greenville will directly impact CHS with three out of every four BMWs exported going thru the CHS Ports – that’s 200,000 SUVs each year or 4,000 a week.  The Post and Courier’s Tyrone Richardson has the story prior to BMW’s official expansion announcement that occurred on Friday.

BMW To Invest $1B and Expand Upstate Plant

In a not-so-surprise announcement, BMW announced on Friday that it would invest another $1 billion to expand its manufacturing plant in the Greer, near Greenville/Spartanburg to build the next generation newer/bigger SUV, the X7, at its only North American plant.  The announcement will increase annual production capacity to 450,000 vehicles and add another 800 employees.   The State newspaper has the brief story.

Apartment Growth in CHS Leading Nation (in % terms)

The Post and Courier’s Tyrone Richardson reports that CHS’ multifamily construction will add an unprecedented 8 percent to its inventory of existing stock, and that makes it one of the biggest percentage gainers in the nation.  With about 45,000 total units and some 3,700 under construction, that is a lot of units, but it is dwarfed by our neighbor to the north, Charlotte that reportedly has some 10,000 units under construction, or a much larger city like Boston adding thousands of new units and 5% to its inventory.  Jobs are being created and that is the big generator for the boom, jobs at Boeing but also high tech and software firms like BenefitFocus that announced 1,200 new jobs.  The Apartment Guide summed it up, saying Charleston’s employment is “a hotbed of activity…the numbers are staggering compared to the rest of the state and nation for job growth…”  The Apartment Guide, however, did not cite statistics in high growth markets Charlotte, Dallas, Houston, South Florida or Washington DC, so reporting that it leads the nation is probably a stretch.

Lowcountry Growth Among Fastest on East Coast

David Slade of The Post and Courier reports the U.S. Census Bureau says SC was home to ALL THREE of the fastest-growing metropolitan areas on the Atlantic Coast in 2013 and CHS accounted for nearly one-third of the state’s population growth since 2010.  At number 1 and 2 (in percentage growth) were Hilton Head and Myrtle Beach.  But if you drove in CHS today, you probably already knew that, as the article also mentions the growing pains of CHS and its traffic woes.  Lately, metro CHS has added 15,000 people each year and the population has grown by 163,000 since 2000.  Additional article from The Digitel.

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Update on Speculation of BMW Announcement on Friday

The State newspaper in Columbia has a great article on an update on the speculation of the BMW announcement on Friday, possibly one of the worst kept business secrets in the past month.  BMW is expected to announce a new SUV model, the larger X7, and its Greer plant near Greenville making the new SUV to add to the nearly 350,000 SUVs they already make there (that’s 7,000 a WEEK for those keeping score).  Its only plant in the U.S., they just recently completed a $1Billion expansion doubling its size and it looks like they could add another $1B and add a third factory on their 1,200 acre site, according to the article.  Its important to CHS as all the SUVs they make in the U.S. are exported to Europe and South America via the Port of CHS.

The article also talks about BMW and its decision to locate/expand in Greer and its proximity to tire manufacturers as SC was the #1 tire producer in the U.S. for the third straight year in 2013.

State Ports Authority Reports Uptick In Cargo

SPA, the State Ports Authority, reported a 4.6% rise in cargo and a 13% increase in revenue and approved the cost to modify the height of two cranes at the Wando Welch Terminal to accommodate the next generation of Post-Panamax ships.  It also approved funds to update the master plan for the Navy Base Terminal, the $700M port project that will open in 2018.  Tyrone Richardson of The Post and Courier has the complete story.

BMW Expanding in Upstate, Again?

John McDermott of The Post and Courier has a story on the chatter of BMW possibly announcing a (nother) major expansion of their assembly plant in Greer, their only assembly operation in the U.S., the same plant they doubled in size two years ago at a cost of $900M.  They produced 300,000 SUVs in 2013 out of Greer, that’s over 800 vehicles a DAY.  And with the U.S. the “world’s largest premium market” the chatter – from BMW executives themselves – is to expand the plant’s capacity and its workforce of 8,000 to include a rumored new vehicle, the X7.  We will all know next week at an announcement on March 28 from Greer that will include Governor Nikki Haley and U.S. Secretary of Commerce Penny Pritzker.  With speakers like that this is surely going to be a major announcement.  And it is relevant to CHS as all of the exported BMWs from Greer go thru the Port of CHS via rail and then to the Columbus Street Pier right downtown.

Pacolet Milliken Acquires Goose Creek Industrial Park

The 1600 acre Bushy Park Industrial Park in Goose Creek has been acquired by the investment arm of textile giant Milliken & Co.  Insiders say it is less of a real estate play and more of a utility play for the group that also invests in energy opportunities.  John McDermott of The Post and Courier has the story.

Orangeburg Manufacturer Investing $10M in Plant

Koyo Bearing North America will invest $10M over the next five years in new machinery and upgrades to its plant that employs about 500 people it was announced on Tuesday.  Koyo is a multi-billion dollar company based in Japan and its major customers are Toyota, Ford, Honda, GM and John Deere with 14 plants across North America.  Warren Wise of The Post and Courier has the story.