Industrial sales soared in the St. Louis market in 2017, with 11.59 million square feet of this commercial class trading hands during the year, according to the latest research from Colliers International.

Colliers’ fourth quarter market report for St. Louis highlighted an industrial market that continues to thrive. And that’s good news for developers and investors both.

According to Colliers, industrial sales ended 2017 with a 56 percent increase when compared to 2016. The area saw plenty of industrial leasing activity, too, with Colliers reporting that 6.95 million square feet of industrial leases were signed in the St. Louis market in 2017.

At the same time, asking rents rose, too. Colliers reported that direct asking rents rose to $4.46 a square foot by the end of the fourth quarter of 2017. That’s a jump from $4.14 a square foot during the first quarter of last year.

What else was hot in St. Louis last year? Speculative industrial construction. Colliers reported that 90 percent of new industrial construction in this market was spec development in 2017. Currently, there is 2.3 million square feet still under construction, both in build-to-suit and spec projects.

Of this new inventory, 1.9 million square feet will be warehouse/distribution space and 380,000 square feet will be manufacturing space.

Amazon, of course, is playing a big role in the St. Louis industrial market. The retail giant leased nearly 1.5 million square feet of industrial space in the St. Louis market in 2016. Last year, the company added 450,000 square feet to its local footprint.

GEODIS, a logistics and freight transportation provider, leased 624,000 square feet in the Gateway East 624 development, while Fairfield Processing Corporation opened its distribution facility in the North Broadway Distribution Center and currently occupies 300,000 square feet.

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