Market Summary

The 2003 Retail Market saw vacancies decrease by about 3.6% while average rents remained the same.

Empty Big Box Stores continue to be seen as a problem for the Haywood Road/Laurens Road area.  However, the announcement of the 450-acre Auto Research Park to this area has some retailers considering a move back into this market.

Several new shopping centers were started in 2003 in Simpsonville, Pelham @ East North Street, Wade Hampton Boulevard and Woodruff Road that accounted for 768,597 SF of new retail space.

New retailers coming into the Greenville market included Wal-Greens and Mast General Store.

The two Regional Malls, Haywood Mall and Greenville Mall, have combined square footage of 2,376,734 SF.  Total Mall vacancies are averaging 5.36%.

Forecast

The addition of 768,597 SF of shopping center space in 2003 should serve to slow new 2004 shopping center starts.  However, businesses that can benefit by being close to those new centers will be in the rise in 2004.  The retail market for 2004 looks to remain strong but with less new construction in the shopping center sector.

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