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Market Report

New Haven - Fairfield County Retail Market Report

Second Quarter 2019

High Incomes Bring in New Luxury Retailers and Sustain Investor Demand

Retail development moderates outside single large-scale delivery, avoiding shock to vacancy. The southern Connecticut region has demonstrated relatively stable retail performance over the past several years. While modest rates of population and job growth keep retail spending from making massive gains, the area is home to many high-income earning individuals who drive strong consumption. That spending has helped sustain retailer demand, with vacancy staying within the low- to  mid-4 percent band for more than two years. Vacancy will remain in the mid-4 percent area in 2019 despite the largest construction pipeline in nearly half a decade. The SoNo Collection, the new regional mall that is fully leased prior to opening, is located in Southern Norwalk near several recent multifamily developments. Any potential impact to vacancy may be further mitigated by the possibility that the space will open in phases that extend into early 2020. Excluding the SoNo project, total arrivals in Fairfield and New Haven counties are just over 300,000 square feet, in line with the past two years. As with the mall, a portion of this space is already claimed, which may weigh on asking rents as some tenants relocate to more productive locations, leaving older space vacant.

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