Vacancy sits among lowest in the nation, powering considerable rent growth. Tight conditions in the Columbus retail market will persist this year, as market vacancy is set to contract yet again, this time dipping below 3 percent. Vacancy rates nearing 2 percent can be found in a variety of suburbs, headlined by neighborhoods in Dublin and Grove City. Sparse retail development will fail to relieve this pressure, as overall deliveries sit in the mid-200,000-square-foot range for a second consecutive year. Much of this year’s construction consists of quick-service and fast-casual dining options as well as first-floor storefronts in recently completed luxury apartment buildings. The pairing of limited construction and low vacancy will result in another year of solid rent growth, building on a previous three-year average of 7 percent. Until the market witnesses a significant amount of development, rental gains should remain rather strong, especially in downtown Columbus and the adjacent Short North District. Communities slightly west of downtown may also post substantial rent growth in the coming months, highlighted by the up-and-coming Franklinton neighborhood.