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New Podcast Released! - Chris Carney, Mayor of Mooresville

Let’s hit this topic head on: The crux of the no-growth argument contends that by stopping growth, current residents can keep things stable and unchanged.  Although avoiding change is impossible and unhealthy, they ignore this decision’s devastating results proven out repeatedly across the country such as skyrocketing taxes, shrinking access to housing, the inability to attract the best talent to fill needed service positions, business failure, and even a disconnect from funding at the state and federal level.  Towns age out, infrastructure deteriorates, young people stay away, and regret sets in. 

In this vein we were pleased to invite Chris Carney, Mayor of Mooresville, to our sound booth this month.  He is both a leader, a guide, and an equalizer. Contending with these passionate sentiments daily, he is slowly and surely helping his Town Commissioners and residents cooperate at the ground level promoting solid financial strategies.  With deft charm, logic, and irrefutable facts he explains how crippling the no-growth outcome is to any area. How?  Listen to this enjoyable episode and find out.

By way of background, our guest, Carney never set out to be in politics.  However, he proclaims during his interview that he is the product of parents whose political beliefs were on opposite ends of the spectrum, exposing him to a myriad of issues with a sense of scale and humanity.  Elected to the office of Mayor in November 2023, he previously served on the town board as Ward 4 Commissioner.  He was elected to that position in 2005 then reelected in 2009 and selected as mayor pro-tem.  Carney was a North Carolina Senator from 2011-2013, serving on several key committees including education, healthcare, and finance. He was also vice chairman of the transportation committee.  Carney, who has been a supporting voice of REBIC during many previous events, is himself a business owner of Strategic Capital Solutions. 

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City of Concord Holding its Next Sewer Allocation Meeting June 25th

The City of Concord will hold its next wastewater allocation meeting on Tuesday, June 25th at 11:00 am.  Here are additional details as well as the meeting packet (over 400 pages, may take a while to download).

City of Concord Holding its Next Sewer Allocation Meeting June 25th

The City of Concord will hold its next wastewater allocation meeting on Tuesday, June 25th at 11:00 am.  Here are additional details as well as the meeting packet (over 400 pages, may take a while to download).

To Transform the Nation’s Downtowns, We Need the Public Sector

Originally published on April 29, 2024, by Jay Biggins for NAIOP.

In the wake of the coronavirus pandemic, many downtowns across the country remain disquietingly vacant. Office towers that once hummed with activity are a bit quieter, the hallways emptier. The U.S. has the highest office vacancy rates – 18.4% – since 1992. Some levels of hybrid and remote work are here to stay, and now the commercial real estate landscape faces some tough decisions, offering both challenges, which are clear, and unique opportunities, which are less well-defined but coming into focus.

Where companies used to require space for virtually all their workers, hybrid work models mean fewer people in the office and, thus, less need for so much square footage. Now, all across the nation’s downtown areas, developers and owners are asking what the future of the “office” looks like. How do we utilize the space that’s available?

The biggest obstacles confront Class B and C office buildings, often in less desirable locations, lacking amenities and/or technology. These properties have the emptiest space, and many have no viable future as office space.

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State to Fund Union County Water and Sewer Needs

The recently passed North Carolina State Budget contains millions of dollars for Union County to make sorely needed improvements to its water and sewer systems.  The final version contains the following funding allocations:

  • Union County Water/Sewer - $26,000,000
  • Waxhaw Greywater System - $1,500,000
  • Wingate Water/Sewer System - $12,000,000
  • Marshville Water/Sewer - $1,000,000
  • Muddy Creek Water/Sewer - $11,000,000 

These funds are significant and should assist in enabling the County and associated municipalities to meet its current and immediate future water/sewer infrastructure needs.  The bill will become effective on October 2nd as Governor Cooper has announced his intention to let it become law without his signature.  To view the State Budget in its entirety, click this link.

Growth Management Working Group: "Mooresville Moratorium is a No Go."

On April 10, 2023, the Mooresville Town Board established a working group for the purpose of evaluating and exploring the feasibility of implementing a development moratorium.  

The working group has completed its assignment and its recommendations are as follows:

  • Complete the update of the OneMooresville Plan and the UDO to better align future growth.
  • As part of the OneMooresville Plan and the UDO, identify areas with adequate infrastructure and encourage development in those areas that are walkable and provide access to other multimodal transportation choices.
  • Identify and investigate areas which are not possible to serve with existing town resources to determine if these areas qualify for a limited moratorium.
  • When the housing study is complete, integrate the findings into the UDO and OneMooresville Plan with the goal of achieving an appropriate balance of housing options.
  • Continue to investigate local transportation bonds and federal and state grant opportunities to improve intersections and other mobility options such as sidewalks, greenways, micro-transit, and expansion of the Mooresville Main bus system. Annexation decisions should include critical analysis of the ability to provide complete and adequate infrastructure and services such as school capacity, utilities, multimodal transportation, and public safety.
  • All new development project decisions should include a review of by-right and previously approved developments to determine the total impact of the project on the surrounding area.
  • Promote the implementation of the Traffic Management Center to manage current road infrastructure.
For additional information, please visit the Town of Mooresville's Growth Management Working Group web page.

Want to help?  We invite YOU to get in a room with these leaders, roll up our sleeves, and get to work helping them move forward the right way.

Boston Seaport Reimagined: The Next Chapter in this Historical Neighborhood

Originally published on May 19, 2023, by Kathryn Hamilton, CAE for NAIOP.

The Boston seaport has been continually reshaped since the 1800s, devolving from what was once a thriving area of commerce to acres of muddy parking lots and a few restaurants. Today, it is being reimagined again in a rapid and remarkable transformation that includes soaring office and lab towers, high-end residential, and all the retail services you could imagine.

Members of NAIOP’s National Forums toured two components of the seaport during their annual Symposium this week in Boston, hearing from the developers, investors and advisors shaping the site today.

Boston Global Investors is a leading partner and developer of Seaport Square, a 6.3 million square foot urban revitalization and the city’s largest master-planned community to date. Kevin Benedix, chief operating officer and chief financial officer, walked Forums members through the history of the project, its inspiration, and how it’s continued to evolve.

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Electric Vehicle Charging Infrastructure Top Priority for Local Governments

Originally published on February 15, 2023, by Toby Burke for NAIOP E-Newsletter.

Cities and counties are increasingly adopting local ordinances that are intended to spur the electrification of our transportation system in order to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions from fossil fuels. A survey by The U.S. Conference of Mayors identified electric vehicles (EVs) “as the most promising technology for reducing energy use and carbon emissions in their cities.” Local efforts to support the use of EVs by both the public and private sectors will require the development and expansion of a reliable and sustainable EV charging system.

Efforts by mayors and local governments to transform the nation’s transportation system from fossil-fueled vehicles to electric ones has been boosted by the federal government and the private automobile industry. Both the Biden Administration and major U.S. carmakers – Ford, General Motors and Stellantis (Chrysler) – have set aspirational goals for EVs to account for 50% of all vehicle sales by 2030. These aspirational goals reflect growing consumer interest for electric vehicles that will further accelerate the demand for a sustainable EV charging network across the United States.

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IRS and Treasury Introduce Regulatory Plan

Originally published on November 8, 2022, for NAIOP E-Newsletter.

While most of the political establishment in the nation’s capital is focused on the midterm congressional elections, federal agency staff are still moving forward on developing regulations from legislation enacted this year. The U.S. Department of the Treasury and the Internal Revenue Service last Friday issued their Priority Guidance Plan for 2022-2023, detailing their top regulatory priorities for the next year.

A major focus of the plan is the clean-energy tax provisions contained in the Inflation Reduction Act that was passed by Congress in August. These include measures on tax credits for electric vehicles, clean-energy manufacturing, and energy-efficiency incentives for commercial real estate and other industries. The plan also includes projects on the newly enacted corporate alternative minimum tax, the tax on corporate stock repurchases, and manufacturing incentives for the semiconductor industry.

The Treasury Department and the IRS will update the plan during the year to add additional items that become priorities as a result of legislative developments, or as a result of input from public comments on proposed regulations.

Priority Guidance Plan

Downtown Huntersville Plan 2022

Previous planning studies related to the Downtown include the 2006 Downtown Master Plan and the 2040 Community Plan.  The 2022 Downtown Plan will both update the 2006 Plan and follow adopted 2040 Plan policies and action priorities.  The Plan will be reviewed by the Huntersville Planning Board and eventually considered for adoption by the Huntersville Town Board of Commissioners. 

The most recent public forum was held on October 20th with about 80 people attending.  The presentation links are listed here for your review:

Once you have had a chance to view the presentation, please complete the survey which will be open until Monday, October 31st at 5:00 PM. 

For additional details about the plan please visit:

Let's Plan Huntersville

Can Industrial be a Good Neighbor in Residential Areas?




By Trey Barrineau

Industrial properties are often built near neighborhoods, but that isn’t always popular with the residents, who have legitimate concerns about noise, traffic and pollution from the increased volume of trucks and vans.

A recent NAIOP online panel discussion examined how developers can work with local communities to address these worries through outreach and engagement, as well as with design and technological innovations.

“Education is key to establishing that relationship early on,” said Sven Tustin, executive vice president with Conor Commercial, who moderated the panel. “The developer has to listen to concerns. Residents look at a site plan that shows 200 dock doors, and they assume that there will be 200 trucks coming in and out 24/7.”

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November Bonds Ahead for Charlotte, Gastonia; CLT Groups Form From 2040 Plan

Bonds on November Ballot For Charlotte, Gastonia

On Nov. 8, Gastonia residents will vote on a $75 million Transportation General Obligation Bond Referendum. The City Council approved the bond referendum at its Aug. 2 meeting.  

Proposed projects include:

  • Street and road repairs
  • Pedestrian walkways (sidewalks)
  • Street resurfacing
  • Utility relocations
  • Street intersection improvements
  • Street light improvements

For more information, visit this link.       

Charlotte voters will also have the opportunity to vote on a $226 million bond package that will upgrade and enhance streets, build housing for low-to moderate-income individuals and families, and improve infrastructure in the city's older neighborhoods and emerging high-growth areas. 

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Mitigating Environmental Risks in Life Science Leases

Dangerous chemicals and infectious diseases are among the many hazardous materials that are handled inside life science facilities. Getty Images
By Michael Pollack

A lot of hazardous material passes through these facilities, so caution is necessary.

Life science industries span a range of uses — clinical research and trials; biologics; medical devices; pharmaceuticals; vaccines research, development, manufacturing, and distribution; plant and animal technology; and veterinary products, to name just a few. Leases for life science facilities can present unique challenges and considerations for building owners. Besides the particular demands life science uses place on electrical capacity, HVAC, floor loads, and waste removal, the activities within these facilities can pose many other risks.

Inherent in many life science facilities is the utilization, storage, and/or distribution of hazardous or toxic materials under applicable environmental laws. Of course, most common leases will contain standard indemnification clauses allocating responsibility to the tenant for losses resulting from its activities. 

When it comes to environmental issues, though, there are unique concerns for owners of life science properties. These include the ecological indemnity the principal owners provide to their lender (which typically comes from a well-funded source other than the property owner). There’s also the strict liability imposed under federal law on anyone in the chain of title for additional cleanup costs, whether or not they caused the contamination. 

Also, another lingering fact involves the owner would typically only have recourse from the tenant for a breach of the lease’s environmental restrictions.

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CommercialEdge: Charlotte Office, National Sales and Vacancy Rates Up in Midyear 2022

By Eliza Theiss 

Two and a half years after the pandemic began, the short-term future for the office sector remains uncertain, with record vacancy rates adding to the industry’s woes, according to a recent office report from CommericalEdge. And as hybrid and work-from-home business models continue to take hold — and rising inflation rates further deter workers from returning to traditional office settings — the sector’s long-term prospects are also murky.

Top Markets for Highest Listing Rate Growth

The average full-service equivalent listing rate in the top 50 U.S. office markets was $37.58 per square foot in June — up two cents from the previous month, but down 2.6% from the previous year.

With a 15.6% gain year-over-year (Y-o-Y), Charlotte, North Carolina, continued to lead the market in price growth, increasing its average full-service equivalent listing fee to $33.45 per square foot. Prices in this market grew at progressively faster rates for the fourth straight month.

Similarly, Miami office space ($47.23/square foot) had a gain of 8.4% over the previous year and continued to be one of the fastest-appreciating office markets. But Boston still outperformed it with a 12% increase, thanks to the city’s thriving life sciences industry.

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Industrial Space Demand Forecast, Third Quarter 2022

NAIOP research

By: Hany Guirguis, Ph.D., Manhattan College and Michael J. Seiler, DBA, William & Mary

Amid lower pressure on global supply chains, increasing inventory carrying costs, a cooling economy and a decrease in the rate of e-commerce expansion, retailers and logistics firms have slowed the rate at which they acquired additional industrial space this year. Net absorption of industrial space in the first two quarters of 2022 was 151.2 million square feet, down sharply from 2021’s record pace but still notably higher than in prior years (see Figure 2). The authors expect the still-hot industrial market to cool, and they forecast that the net absorption rate will continue to decline until it returns to the pre-pandemic trend. Total net absorption of industrial space in the second half of 2022 is forecast to be 112.4 million square feet, and full-year absorption in 2023 is forecast to be 209.4 million square feet (see Figure 1 for quarterly projections).

The Industrial Market

Supply chain congestion eased during the first half of 2022, as illustrated by the decline in the Federal Reserve Bank of New York’s Global Supply Chain Pressure Index from 4.35 in December 2021 to 2.41 in June 2022. As a result, retailers and logistics firms have shown less interest in leasing or buying industrial space before it is needed, a trend that contributed to higher absorption in 2021. Amazon’s decision to substantially scale back its expansion plans is the most prominent example of this shift in demand for industrial space. Nonetheless, smaller e-commerce firms, and even traditional retailers, continue to lease more distribution space despite slowing e-commerce growth as more consumers return to shopping at bricks-and-mortar retail. Industrial vacancy rates remain historically low as the ability to supply new space continues to face physical and political limitations in land-constrained markets. These low vacancy rates continue to cause asking rents, and ultimately transaction prices, to increase. Premium prices are being paid for properties with soon-to-expire leases and even vacancies as they allow owners to lease out more space at record-high market rates.

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Top Five US Metros for Life Sciences In 2022

Life sciences



Growth in the life sciences sector has driven demand in recent years for both commercial real estate space and labor to accommodate this specialized sector. A new study by commercial real estate platform CommercialCafe set out to identify the best metros for life science companies in 2022 and assessed more than 40 metropolitan statistical areas (MSAs) in terms of regional talent pool and workforce; accessibility of local office markets; the degree of availability of existing dedicated property; as well as the state of the local pipeline aiming to expand local life sciences capacity.

Boston took the number one spot on the list, with San Francisco in second place, then San Diego third, New York fourth, and Washington, D.C., rounding out the top five.

A longtime “flagship market” for life sciences, the Boston metropolitan area remains a leader in the sector. The MSA stood out for several key indices scored in the ranking: Boston boasts the largest labor pool among the metros analyzed, as well as the largest life sciences real estate market — nearly 25 million square feet of existing dedicated property, of which just under 14 million square feet was LEED-certified space. What’s more, with an additional 23.8 million square feet of new life sciences developments in the pipeline — under construction, as well as in the planned and prospective stages — Boston seems firmly placed at number one for the foreseeable future.

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NAIOP on Carried Interest and Update on Senate Passage of Reconciliation Bill

Last week, the U.S. Senate passed the Inflation Reduction Act of 2022, a $740 billion budget reconciliation measure with provisions to address climate change and energy security, extend federal healthcare subsidies, and allow Medicare to negotiate prescription drug prices. As we informed you last week, the bill, which had been negotiated by Senate Majority Leader Charles Schumer (D-NY) and Senator Joe Manchin (D-WV), contained a proposal changing the taxation of carried interests that would have harmed the commercial real estate industry and real estate entrepreneurs.

When the Schumer-Manchin agreement was announced, NAIOP and NAIOP Arizona, along with our national real estate allies, mobilized to support Senator Kyrsten Sinema (D-AZ) in her efforts to oppose the proposed changes to carried interest. In order to ensure her vote, the proposal was dropped from the bill before the legislation was brought up for floor debate.

We are gratified that the concerns of NAIOP and the real estate industry were considered on this very important issue. For more than a decade, NAIOP has successfully opposed various proposals to alter the tax treatment of carried interests, or “promotes” as they are known in real estate. While characterized in the media as affecting Wall Street hedge fund managers, these tax increases would have had a much broader economic impact, impacting real estate partnerships, the venture capital industry and others. We have been engaged with policymakers long before this latest proposal was introduced, and our members’ support has been extremely helpful.

Senator Sinema promised to continue working with Senator Mark Warner (D-VA) to develop legislation reforming carried interest taxation. I want to assure every NAIOP member that, on this and the other important issues affecting commercial real estate, we and our NAIOP chapters will continue our strong advocacy on behalf of you and our industry.

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UDO: Planning Committee to Review and Recommend

Compiled from REBIC, staff reports

REBIC’s Rob Nanfelt reported Tuesday that the City’s Planning Committee is taking up the matter of the proposed Unified Development Ordinance. Next month, committee members will take any additional recommendations before the third/final draft.

Last week, the Charlotte City Council received comments from the community during a public hearing on the proposed UDO. Click here to view the resolution. The entire hearing is available to view here – beginning approximately at the 2:51:30 mark.   

Next is a review and recommendation from the City’s Planning Committee scheduled to begin Tuesday, July 19, at 5 p.m. Those interested can view it on the City’s Planning Department YouTube Channel. The complete agenda and meeting packet is available here.

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UDO Meeting Set For July 11; CLT Water Plan Review Back On

REBIC's Rob Nenfelt and his team put together this week's Two For Tuesday and UDO takes center stage early next week.

UDO - Public Hearing Scheduled for Monday

The Charlotte City Council has scheduled a public hearing on the proposed Unified Development Ordinance (UDO) for Monday, July 11. The Council Action Review begins at 5:00 pm followed by the Public Forum/Business meeting at 6:30 pm. An agenda should be available here by Friday afternoon. Click here to sign up to speakRebic Logo

Also, Planning Staff has just released responses to public comments submitted prior to last Thursday's deadline. Additional changes will be reflected in the next and likely final draft when it is released which will occur prior to the expected vote on adoption in late August. Here's a link to the page containing the Second Draft Public Comments - With Staff Responses.

For additional UDO resources, please visit Charlotte's Unified Development Ordinance (UDO) - (

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Vacant Storefronts Can be Repurposed into Retail Incubators

Retail incubator

Vacant Storefronts Can be Repurposed into Retail Incubators

They can provide an immediate boost in shopping districts and grow future businesses into long-term tenants.

  • Written by Ilana Preuss, Development Magazine

The COVID-19 pandemic has left America’s retail districts pockmarked with empty storefronts, but there is a creative solution. These vacant spaces, which often can be purchased or rented at reduced prices, are prime targets for conversion into retail incubators.

Retail incubators, like business incubators, nurture new or small-scale entrepreneurs during the startup phase. They mitigate some of the challenges of opening a business by providing financial and technical assistance, such as the basics of marketing and business plans. Tenants typically share space, ideas and operating expenses in locations that they could not otherwise afford. Many spaces have flexible or temporary lease terms. Some allow for small-scale manufacturing and hold community events, such as product demonstrations, fashion shows and art openings.

In addition to real estate, retail incubators provide fledgling businesses with valuable resources such as technical and financial assistance.  

According to the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, new business applications in the United States set an all-time record of 5.1 million in 2021. At the same time, the pandemic has led to consolidation of space and locations by major retail brands, which reduced the prospect of attracting businesses. The challenge for small businesses is they can’t immediately fill the footprints of major store closings. However, they can make temporary use of retail space to establish their businesses, and occupying formerly abandoned stores can help energize struggling downtowns.

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