The market wants you, small business owner.
Property Owners want to talk to you.
Bankers want to talk to you.
Realtors want to talk to you.
The City wants to talk to you.
Because we have space available for you. We have big spaces and little ones. We have open ones and closed ones. We have street front retail with tons of glass and we have funky and quirky spaces that can be cool in the hands of the creative types.
One of the mandates from “On High” by those that allow development to happen (City of Richmond Planning Department, mostly) was that they wanted the adaptive re-use projects to be “mixed use.” They want the development community to make sure that they included some commercial space at the street level in each of the projects that they were doing even though the residential apartment market was hot. To their credit, the planning department forced the developers to ‘eat their peas’ and create some space for the coffee shops, small markets, quirky retail and new restaurants that are what ultimately make the neighborhood more engaging. Engaging neighborhoods means higher rents. Higher rents mean happy developers and happy developers develop more.
It is circular.
If you are a small business owner, you benefit. You are in a really good place to find space that will help you define your brand…and it is (at least for the moment)…rather inexpensive. The amount of development that has occurred in the past 5 years in the apartment market has created a lot of commercial street level space that has either yet to be absorbed or has been absorbed at levels far below market rent. Likewise, incentives exist at almost all levels for commercial users and banks love to make loans to the owner-occupant.
These commercial boxes range from 400SF up to 4,000 in many cases and can be found in Shockoe, Mancehster, along Broad, in Jackson Ward, in Rocketts and soon will be found in Scotts Addition, too. All of these districts have buildings constructed of bricks and beams touched by 100 or more years of history that make the spaces powerful and authentic. This authenticity spills over into the brand of companies that lie within. It helps the recruit and it helps them retain. In the coming years, it will be even more obvious.
For a list of properties that meet your criteria, you can reach us at firstname.lastname@example.org.