Category Archives: JAX Market Info

JAX Created Nearly 18,000 New Jobs Over Past 12 Months

Metro JAX added 17,900 new jobs from August 2017 to July 2018, led by the education/health services and transportation/utilities sectors.  Statewide, Florida, has an annual job growth rate of 3.6%, double that of the nation’s 1.8%, according to Governor Rick Scott’s office and the city of Jacksonvile.

Topgolf and IKEA Updates

Topgolf opened for business on October 28th, after much anticipation and excitement. The venue is 65,000 SF and located near the St. Johns Town Center, just west (and visible) from I-295.

Ikea broke ground yesterday, with a planned opening in 2017. The store will be 290,000 SF and located on 25 acres, with 950 parking spaces. Ikea plans to hire 250 people once the store opens. This will be the 4th Ikea in Florida, and the first in Northeast Florida.

Both of these developments are great signs for the city, demonstrating that the city is now “on the radar” for major retailers who previously overlooked Jacksonville. Topgolf and Ikea chose sites close to the St. Johns Town Center, which is viewed by outsiders as the prime retail hub of the city.

Project Vero- Another Amazon DC?

An unnamed company is seeking incentives totaling some $8.3M from the state and city for the proposed construction of a 1 million square foot distribution center that could be built at city owned Cecil Commerce Center in Jacksonville’s Westside submarket.

The project sounds very similar to the Amazon distribution center that was announced earlier this year, which was being referred to as Project Rex when they were at this stage of the process. There is a strong possibility that the company behind Project Vero could be Amazon, who has built more than one distribution center in the same market before. In fact, it is somewhat common for Amazon to build one distribution center to pick, pack and ship smaller items, and another to process larger items, such as furniture, sporting equipment, TV’s and other larger consumer products.

The Cecil Commerce location would be about 23 miles south of the location that was already announced, which is at 12900 Pecan Park Road, right off I-295 and just south of the Airport.

Karen Brune Mathis with the Daily Record covered the story.

It’s Official- Amazon DC Coming to Jax

After much speculation, Amazon has made it official- they will be opening a 800,000 SF + distribution/fulfillment center in Jacksonville, which will create more than 1,500 full time jobs. The site, which was sold by Colliers International, is at Duval and Pecan Park roads, visible from I-295. For several months, there has been speculation surrounding a project being referred to as “Project Rex” which was seeking city and state incentives, and described a company that sounded very much like Amazon, without actually naming them.

Karen Brune Mathis with The Daily Record covered the story.

2016 NE-FLA Mid-Year Investment Market Report

The 2016 Mid-Year Investment Market Report is here! The report covers investment activity that occurred in Northeast Florida during the first half of the year and includes all asset classes. The report is published semi-annually, and c0-authored by Ernie Saltmarsh and Scott Rogers, investment specialists with Colliers International Northeast Florida.

To view/download the report, click HERE

Mercedes-Benz USA Expanding in Jax

Mercedes-Benz USA is relocating an engineering services division from a town in New Jersey to Jacksonville. Mercedes already has a presence in town- leasing around 500,000 SF at the International Trade Port near Jacksonville International Airport. The relocation will cost Mercedes a total capital investment of $2.1M; city and state incentives totaled $448,200, and the new division will result in 50 new jobs.

Derek Gilliam with the Jacksonville Business Journal covered the story.

Jacksonville- New #2 Forbes Ranking

Jacksonville was recently named by Forbes magazine as #2 on a list of the top “10 Cities Americans Are Moving To Right Now”. Reasons cited in the report include “friendlier climates, communities and costs of living”. Below is the full lineup.

  1. Tampa, FL ($230,000 med. home price / 4.4% unemployment rate)
  2. Jacksonville, FL ($272,400 med. home price / 4.4% unemployment rate)
  3. Charlotte, NC ($257,500 med. home price / 5.1% unemployment rate)
  4. San Antonio, TX ($275,000 med. home price / 3.7% unemployment rate)
  5. Austin, TX ($399,000 med. home price / 3.1% unemployment rate)
  6. Las Vegas, NV ($260,000 med. home price / 6% unemployment rate)
  7. Orlando, FL ($262,400 med. home price / 4.3% unemployment rate)
  8. Nashville, TN ($315,000 med. home price / 3.2% unemployment rate)
  9. Raleigh, NC ($297,200 med. home price / 4.6% unemployment rate)
  10. Portland, OR ($416,300 med. home price / 4.6% unemployment rate)

In a similar list, Forbes ranked the “10 States People Are Fleeing”, which included: New Jersey, New York, Illinois, Connecticut, Ohio, Kansas, Massachusetts, West Virginia, Mississippi and Maryland.

From; Karsten Strauss

Jobs, Jobs, Jobs !!!

If you are wondering who is buying all the new houses around town or you’ve been thinking that I-95 traffic is a little heavier than usual, your gut is spot on.  The JAX region’s economy continues to build steam and create more and more jobs as shown in the table below from the US Bureau of Labor Statistics.  From the economic trough in 2010 – where we were at 580k jobs – that increased a anemic 6k to 8k jobs in 2011 and 2012, respectively, and then 13k to 14k the next two years, but much stronger last year with almost 24k jobs in 2015, or a fairly robust 3.8% increase.  Also interesting to note that we eclipsed the pre-Great Recession peak of 631k jobs during 2015 and are approaching 5% higher than that high watermark.

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Local Sears and Kmart’s Closing

Sears Holdings (SHLD) announced yesterday that it would be closing 68 Kmart’s and 10 Sears locations this summer, leaving the company with less than 900 Kmarts and under 700 Sears. Store sales for both retailers have declined ever since 2005. Experts attribute the decline of Sears to a lack of store and merchandise upgrades, while Kmarts problem has been the inability to compete with other discounters (namely Walmart).

The Kmart on San Jose Boulevard and the one in Neptune Beach on Atlantic Boulevard will close, as well as the Sears in Regency Mall.

Jonathan Chew with Fortune covered the story.

Could an Amazon Distribution Center be Headed to Jax?

There is a lot of speculation regarding a project being referred to as “Project Rex”, which is seeking $18.4M in state and city incentives to locate a business in the area. The company promises to bring 1,500 jobs to the area, and estimates the payroll to be upwards of $51M. The development cost is estimated at $200 million.

Here are some of the facts leading to people to speculate that Project Rex is Amazon:

  • The developer who is named in documents related to the project has completed two projects for Amazon in the past, in Richmond, VA and Nashville, TN
  • The project is described as a “state-of-the-art fulfillment center”
  • It would be located on a 171 acre site near the Jacksonville Int’l Airport
  • The summary of the project describes the un-named company as having more than 20 years of experience in retail and e-commerce, with over 200,000 employees worldwide- this description matches the description on Amazon’s website

David Chapman and Karen Brune Mathis with the Daily Record covered the story.