In Insights

By Paul Bubny

The construction crane, which following the downturn seemed as close to extinction as the whooping crane, has made a comeback in select markets and sectors. However, if the misquoted maxim from Field of Dreams—if you build it, they will come—ever held true, those days are past. It’s closer to the mark to correctly cite what the disembodied voice told Kevin Costner in that 1988 movie before he began putting up a baseball stadium in an Iowa cornfield: “If you build it, he will come.” In other words, targeted development.

“End users are becoming much selective in terms of what they would like to see,” Charles Pinkham III, vice president of development at Portman Holdings in Atlanta, tells Real Estate Forum. “Good real estate is good real estate and always will be, but what’s happening inside that real estate is becoming more crucial.” In office development, for example, those end users want a space that encourages collaboration, especially since a fair amount of the individual worker’s daily responsibilities can be carried out off-site, he says.

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