Orlando Commercial Real Estate Wrap-Up – March 2020

Theme parks close due to pandemic. Major construction work carries on. Catch up with our March list of Orlando must-reads.
Walt Disney World. Image via Pixabay.com

March was a busy month in Orlando’s real estate sector, despite growing concerns around the widespread COVID-19 pandemic. While construction work continued at many of the city’s major projects, the Theme Park Capital of the World’s namesakes largely closed for business. The market’s retail assets also face challenges with rent issues on the horizon, though some relief is on the way. Read our March selection of Orlando must-knows:

1. OPERATIONS – Hospitality sector shuts down amid coronavirus concerns.

Walt Disney Co. closed the doors of Walt Disney World Resort, and other theme parks in the metro—including SeaWorld, Adventure Island, Discovery Cove and Universal Orlando Resort—followed suit, according to clickorlando.com. As tourism slows to a halt, with some hospitality assets—including the Hyatt Regency at the Orange County Convention Center—also halting operations. Reopening dates have yet to be determined.

2. DEVELOPMENT – Work on major urban projects continues.

Orlando has several major projects underway where work has not been halted, according to Orlando Business Journal. One of them is the $2.2 billion south terminal at Orlando International Airport, which is expected to wrap up in late 2021. The $2.3 billion Interstate 4 extension project will also continue to move forward. Construction work on Universal’s Epic Universe park will not cease, although the 700-acre project is not expected to open until 2023.

3. OPERATIONS – Publix waives rents for two months.

Publix owns 282 shopping centers, according to Tampa Bay Times. The supermarket chain will offer rent relief to its tenants forced to close due to the coronavirus pandemic. In addition to the two-month rent relief, the company also is waiving payments for common-area maintenance fees and taxes, regardless of tenant access to other forms of financial aid. 

4. DEAL – Tratt Properties buys CVS distribution center.

A closed-ended fund managed by EXAN Capital sold the property for $41.2 million, according to GrowthSpotter. The 713,585-square-foot facility serves nearly 500 stores. Located on 43 acres at 8201 Chancellor Drive in southern Orlando, the warehouse is close to Florida’s Turnpike and the Beachline Expressway. Cushman & Wakefield assisted the seller.

5. DEAL – Downtown 7-Eleven trades for $6.3 million.

JLL Capital Markets brokered the sale of the 2,990-square-foot retail building on behalf of the seller. A private investor purchased the asset at a 4.17 percent cap rate, the lowest for a 7-Eleven outside of California, according to the brokerage firm. The store at 83 E. Colonial Drive opened in 2000.