Newspaper article THE JOURNAL RECORD

Shopping Center Vacancy Rate Has Slight Rebound

Newspaper article THE JOURNAL RECORD

Shopping Center Vacancy Rate Has Slight Rebound

Article excerpt

A slight rebound back up to 13.76 percent in the shopping center vacancy rate was reported Thursday for the Oklahoma City metropolitan area by Southwest Property Management Corp.

The fall vacancy rate reported in the semi-annual Metroplitan Oklahoma City Shopping Center Survey, was up from 13.33 percent last spring, when the rate had been down for the first time in a year.

About 2.5 million square feet of space were reported vacant out of a total of 18.15 million square feet in 154 shopping centers, according to the report by Becky Tully, director of retail leasing for Southwest Property.

Of the eight geographic areas in the report, the Northwest area of Oklahoma City and Midwest City-Del City showed the only vacancy rate reductions from last spring. Vacancy rates were up last spring in the other three quadrants of the city plus downtown, Norman and Edmond, according to the report, with Norman reporting the highest rate.

However, the overall slight increase for the metro area "should not be considered a downward trend," said Tully.

"We probably will see a slow down in business closings and an increase in activity," she said. "These things, along with new development almost at a standstill, should increase the absorption of retail space."

Northwest Oklahoma City had a vacancy rate of 13.9 percent for the fall, said the report, down from 14.6 percent last spring. The Northwest area is by far the largest with a total of 8.97 million square feet in shopping centers and 1.25 million square feet vacant.

Midwest City-Del City shopping centers had vacancy rate of 7.6 percent, down from 8.5 percent last spring, the report said. It is the third largest area with a total of 1. …

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