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The Cities are Hot, The Suburbs are Not

The Cities are Hot, The Suburbs are Not

The Cities are Hot,   The Suburbs are Not

The world of commercial office space is changing.  The questionsis not only how it’s changing but where?

In the 1940’s and 1950’s, returning GI’s left the cities to buy their dream homes in the suburbs.  The developers were more than happy to accommodate and thus began the suburban sprawl.  Office buildings were built to accommodate companies that wanted offices near their owners, employees, and customers.  For over 50 years, this cycle repeated itself throughout the country and suburban office markets boomed.

This changed in the first decade of the new millennium.  The millennials, raised on digital social connectivity, wanted social connection in real life and a lifestyle incorporating working, living, and playing, in the same proximity.  They moved to cities, both large and small, that could accommodate their lifestyle: New York City, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Chicago, Boston, Denver, Salt Lake City, Nashville, Austin, Portland, and Phoenix.  Technology and other industries followed, driven by their need for millennial talent.  As a result, the millennial population and businesses grew exponentially in the cities while declining dramatically in the suburbs.

The question is how long will this new paradigm last?  It has been predicted that once the millennials reach forty years old they will start families, want houses, and move to the suburbs.  Since the millennials are defined as the demographic born between 1980 and 2000, the first 40-year-old millennials won’t reach us until 2020.  All we can do is wait; time will tell.

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The New World of Work

Collaborative office space was originally conceived by Steve Jobs for his new Pixar headquarters in Emeryville, California.  He believed employees who work independently are less creative than those who work together.  So he designed Pixar to provide chance encounters, giving employees the opportunity to connect, collaborate, and create.

As more tech companies adopted this approach, they observed and experienced the extensive benefits of collaborative office space:

  • Reduced Footprint. Traditional office spaces are based on 250-300 square feet per person.  Employees in collaborative space sit at benches and managers use workstations, thus reducing space needs by up to 40 percent.
  • Google Space. Google took collaborative space to the next level.  Perks such as gourmet food, massages, and fitness facilities are bait to attract and retain top talent. This minimizes the need for and cost of staffing companies.
  • Work/Life Balance. Google Space has become so attractive to employees that they don’t want to leave the office.  They eat gourmet food and have their dogs at their side, enabling them to work late into the evening.
  • Fewer Sick Days. Wellness has become a major component of the new office environment.  Healthy foods and exercise areas promote wellness, reducing time away from work.
  • Innovation.  Collaborative space fosters creativity.  Since all companies thrive on innovation, collaborative office space has become a major contributor to their success.
  • Brand Promotion. While collaborative space is good for the employees, the design of today’s office space has become a showroom for the company’s brand, which helps to sell the company’s products to potential clients.

The benefits of collaborative office space are too numerous and influential to ignore.  That’s why so many of the world’s top companies are retrofitting their offices accordingly.  Contact Peggy Gallagher, your ITRA Global Representative to re-invent your office environment!


This article was originally seen in the monthly mailed newsletter.

Posted in: ITRA Global

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Las Vegas ITRA Global Conference 2013

Las Vegas ITRA Global Conference – April 5th to 7th, 2013

So far 2013 has been a busy one, here is a quick recap from my trip to Las Vegas!

April 5th to 7th I attended the ITRA Global Conference hosted in Las Vegas.  A special thanks to Banner Travel in Rockledge, PA for assisting me in making my travel arrangements for this trip via Southwest Airlines and the Wynn Hotel.  When I arrived I was able to get tickets to the Cirque Du Sole show, KA at the MG M Grand. Ka was a spectacular show, if you get a chance to see it, go! Ka has been described as the following: “Ka… signifies life-force, consciousness, duty and destiny. In the vulgate, or low speech, it also means a place to which an individual must go.” ITRA Global Logo located on the homepage of PG Commercial Real Estate the website of Peggy Gallagher Commercial Realtor in Montgomery County, PA


On Friday, Melissa Meyer President of Bruce International, Inc. (transcending translations) presented and did an excellent job. It was amazing to listen to her Top Ten Questions to ask our customers who maybe relocating out of our country, sending a team aboard, or a company locating in the US from somewhere else. Melissa also cited examples that highlight the reasons for using a specialized company, such as Bruce International, to assist with translations and customs of a culture if you are planning to do business outside of your own country.  There are cases where the  same words in a language can have different meanings or uses varying with the local culture; just think about the differences in the expressions of the British versus the US English.  During the presentation the question of the accuracy of Google Translation came up. This was an excellent example of a great tool that can translate out of context. The lesson we walked away with was, it is not worth it to insult or offend a client and to rely on a human translation vs an automated translation to ensure the translation is accurate to the situation and in context!

Many of the conference speakers were principals of other ITRA Global Affiliates. Other guest speakers included Matt Weirich and Ani Rangarajan, co-founders of ReaLync. On Saturday one of our ITRA Global members, Ron Pollina, Ph.D., shared his valuable experience in completing  Sale/Lease backs transactions.  The transactions  he used as examples were huge, significant sizes, in terms of dollar volume.

I gained a lot of good useful information  by attending the conference.  As an organization (ITRA Global) three new members were accepted to be exclusive ITRA Global Affiliates for Orange County (Corporate Realty Advisors), Los Angeles County (Mazirow Commercial), California, and Salt Lake City (Logical Move), Utah. Congratulations to our newest members, welcome to the team!

Vegas MoutainsWynn Hotel Street ViewTerrible's HotelPoolside Garden - Wynn

Hotel Lobby - WynnTreasure Island HotelWynn Lobby



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