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VOL. 118 | NO. 152 | Tuesday, August 24, 2004

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Collierville Office Market Poised for Growth


The Daily News

Colliervilles office market is so primed for growth that officials including town administrator James Lewellen predict the suburb soon will offer some of the most sought-after space for corporate office development in Metro Memphis.

The place to be. And while Mark Halperin, executive vice president at Boyle Investment Co., said the Collierville office market is still in the relatively early stages of development, he agreed with Lewellen that growth is on an upswing.

Collierville is the place to be in terms of the office market, said Halperin, who handles leasing and management for all of Boyles office properties, both multi-tenant and single-purpose facilities.

Boyle continues to be heavily invested in the Collierville office market particularly with its large Schilling Farms development, the companys primary focus of office development in the area and Halperin said the company is currently in discussions to bring new people onto the scene in Collierville.

Schilling Farms. He compared Schilling Farms, the companys more than 400-acre mixed-use development, to the companys 150,000-square-foot Ridgeway Center development at Poplar Avenue and Interstate 240 in terms of its importance to the area. The $350 million Schilling Farms development, which has frontage along Poplar Avenue and Winchester Road and provides quick access to Bill Morris Parkway, offers various types of sites and opportunities and has been well-received, he said.

Halperin said the company has had a long-running interest in Collierville office space, adding that Boyle has been active in the office market in multi-tenant prime office space in Memphis for nearly 30 years.

Most recently in Schilling Farms, activity has involved the sale of one- to two-acre lots ranging in size from 12,000 square feet to 15,000 square feet for individual office buildings. Boyle officials anticipate that these smaller users will serve as a precursor to bigger tenants seeking office space in Collierville.

Overall market. Outside Schilling Farms, the company has several other properties about to come on the market, and Halperin said Boyle remains pleased with the overall market in Collierville.

Its a great place, he said. And I think over time well see a lot more of the major corporate users gravitating along the Poplar corridor to Collierville.

In the meantime, other developers are noticing the trend.

Trip Trezevant of Trezevant Enterprises said though he primarily deals with retail development in the town, he has proposed a 25,000-square-foot office building for the Sloane Square retail center. And Lewellen said the 10-acre Halle Park Professional Center being developed next to Collierville Town Hall is selling out fast.

Jon Albright, president of Jon Albright Real Estate Services, is developing the office park, as well as finishing a number of other projects in Collierville.

Site work has been completed on Halle Park Professional Center, he said, and construction has begun on several pre-sold office buildings ranging from 1,200 square feet to 7,200 square feet. The development eventually will include 23 freestanding office buildings.

Driving the market. Halperin offered a variety of explanations for the surge of interest in Colliervilles office market.

Traditionally, the strength of the office building market comes from proximity to residential activity and a close proximity to decision-makers, Halperin said.

Collierville currently offers both, but up to this point, he said, the towns office market had been dominated by small to medium-size users, despite a few large users such as Helena Chemical, which occupies a 100,000-square-foot Class A building.

Waking up. As time goes on, however, Halperin predicts that more large users will flock to Collierville. And while the full flower of office trade in Collierville has yet to be seen, Ken Hall, vice president of communications and marketing for the Memphis Regional Chamber, said there is currently plenty of business growth to meet the demands of the towns population base.

Collierville has gone from essentially being a bedroom community to a suburb having a business center, Hall said.


PROPERTY SALES 116 288 17,672
MORTGAGES 143 337 20,372
BUILDING PERMITS 139 488 36,434
BANKRUPTCIES 43 158 11,322