Steady Beginning to the New Year

Market Overview

The industrial market remained steady in Columbia, South Carolina during the first quarter of 2014 which came to a close at a total vacancy rate of 7.26%, down just 2 basis points from year-end 2013.  Sales activity continued to be present in the market but lease transaction volume was low.

Northeast Columbia continues to possess most of the large blocks of available space in the market and holds the highest vacancy rate at 15.0%.  The vacancy rate in Southeast Columbia has fluctuated between 8% and 10% over the past year, but was up to 11.0% at the end of the first quarter of 2014.  2050 American Italian was recently vacated and added 122,000 square feet of available space to the Southeast Columbia submarket.  While an increase in vacancy is oftentimes considered a step in the wrong direction, in tight market conditions it proves beneficial as a vacant building of this size provides an opportunity to attract a new company to the market.

Construction at Nephron Pharmaceuticals’ new $330 million manufacturing facility at 4500 12th Street Extension in Cayce is nearing completion and is to be operational this spring.  The company, which is headquartered in Orlando, Florida, manufactures generic inhalation solutions and plans to expand its Columbia, SC product line to include ophthalmic and injectable medications.  Nephron currently has hired 80 employees and is still filling several positions.  The company is contemplating launching a second phase, but definite plans have not been made.

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