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2019 Q2 Retail Columbia Report

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Retail is thriving, not dying

Key Takeaways

  • Columbia retail is not dying, it is thriving- the market absorbed 114,051 square feet during the second quarter of 2019.
  • Weighted rental rates will continue to decrease as the vacancy rate continues as decline.

Columbia retail thrives, despite media proclaiming the death of retail

Retail is often denoted as “dying” and experiencing a “retail apocalypse” due to e-commerce; in reality, however, the Columbia retail market has been resilient through it all. Of course, there have been fluctuations in absorption and vacancy rates as tenants attempt to find their niche within the market. However, the Columbia core vacancy rate is only 79 basis points higher than it was one year ago and, in non-core shop space, the vacancy rate is 196 points lower than this time last year. Therefore, if retail was truly dying as the media has been predicting for the last several years, the market would not have healthy numbers and positive activity. In fact, Columbia’s central location within the state and access to several logistic avenues are attractive to omni-channel retailers with an e-commerce warehousing component. In such an instance, e-commerce will boost the Columbia retail market activity and draw new owner/users to construct headquarters and additional omni-channel retail components within the market.


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2019 Q2 Retail Columbia Report

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Crystal Baker

Research Manager | South Carolina


I am responsible for the collection of market data and the interpretation and reporting of key research insights for the state of South Carolina. I produce and distribute approximately 65 market reports per year for various property types including office, industrial, retail, multifamily, hotel, construction and parking. I manage research interns who collect the data for market reports and other projects. I am responsible for coordinating with regional and national researchers to produce branded thought leadership content. I am also involved in on-demand research projects for brokers and their clients as well as research initiatives related to the expansion of Colliers’ corporate services and advisory offerings across South Carolina. I strive to be an asset by providing the highest level of market intelligence. 

My experience in commercial real estate administration gives me a deeper understanding of the terminology and real estate processes, allowing me to provide the highest quality of research services to Colliers’ clients.

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