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Columbus: Downtown: Convention Center Developments and News

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It is obviously something they consider I would guess, but from what they have indicated, the biggest focus and cause for pause right now is that there are approximately 8000 units that are in development that are in the 3 year pipeline to be delivered and they want to see the market handle them before committing to more in a rising interest rate environment. The population growth is only one component of the whole thing.

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Columbus, Cincinnati, Cleveland are all seeing a boom in their urban cores. the biggest thing about Columbus is that they have the most units in the pipeline than the other cities. While that is good and exciting, there are more units in development in the region than Columbus population growth supports at this time and it will take time for the market to absorb it.

 

Yes, there may be a push for more downtown units, but units being developed in Delaware county, etc help determine what the market will sustain from a lender point of view.

 

The problem is that building a 20 story tower downtown is a lot more expensive than a 3 story building in Powell or Reynoldsburg or Marysville. While rents will be much higher to justify the development, for such a development to take place, the developer needs to put down a lot more money up front in order to get the deal off the ground. When you are talking about building a $100 million tower, it is rare to find a developer with that much liquid cash to take that risk. The lenders who would lend on such a property see Columbus as overbuilt and needing to take a pause.

 

I know you are excited about Columbus growth but the financing fundamentals that preclude or slow down this type of development has nothing to do with the growth going on, it is mostly the financing community taking a pause to catch its breath before proceeding further.

 

Dallas Ft. Worth and Denver are faster growing markets than Columbus but are going through some hyper-supply issues and development lending is slowing in those cities. It will pick up again soon if things stay strong, but it is all about letting the market absorb what is built before moving forward again.

 

Columbus' average annual growth so far this decade is 12,176.  That's 30% higher than even during the peak of the annexation years of the 1950s.  You mention 8000 units in the pipeline in the next 3 years.  A study on the region stated that at least 33,000 new units would be needed by 2030, or about 2,540 per year every year.  The 8000 is a slightly higher rate than that, but not by much.  Keep in mind that that study had to be updated due to initially underestimating regional population growth, and the 12,176 is based on estimates.  Columbus has grown faster than the estimates when the decennial census counts were done in at least the past few decades, so in all likelihood, the estimated unit need is still too low.  Furthermore, Columbus has seen MUCH higher residential construction in other years when the population was growing more slowly.  For example, single-family home construction starts are still well under what they were prior to the recession, and even apartment construction is under the rate of the apartment boom that occurred in the area in the late 1990s.  This has led to record low inventory for multiple years in a row, along with rising housing and rent prices which also continue to hit new record highs.  However, the point is even more drastic if those 8000 units are spread across the metro rather than just Columbus or Franklin County alone.  How many of those units are actually there? 

 

It seems strange for lenders to focus on areas like Delaware County in determining the market of Columbus, though.  Franklin County receives the bulk of all new population into the metro area.  It grew 4.5x faster than Delaware County in total.  It grew more than every county in the metro combined.  I would imagine that the markets are very different county to county. 

 

As I said, you just seem to be saying that they're being cautious.  There is no indication, at least in Franklin County, that new construction is having any trouble being absorbed.  The core county is where the 23,300 people moving to the metro every year largely want to be.  If lenders are taking a breather, it seems unrelated to actual market conditions. 

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Insight 2050 has revised their population estimates for 2050 to 1 million new residents in the metro. The projection from 2010 to 2050 was 500,000 but we have already seen an increase of 150,000 since 2010. Check out the graph here: http://getinsight2050.org/

Shouldn't this info open up lenders' purses?

 

Yes, that's the report I was thinking of.  The projection had to be doubled already.  The vast majority of those people moving to the metro are coming to Franklin County, and a little more than half of all the metro's growth is into Columbus proper.  Record high prices, record low inventory in the city suggests that there is no overbuilding going on there, at least not yet.

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Columbus, Cincinnati, Cleveland are all seeing a boom in their urban cores. the biggest thing about Columbus is that they have the most units in the pipeline than the other cities. While that is good and exciting, there are more units in development in the region than Columbus population growth supports at this time and it will take time for the market to absorb it.

 

Yes, there may be a push for more downtown units, but units being developed in Delaware county, etc help determine what the market will sustain from a lender point of view.

 

The problem is that building a 20 story tower downtown is a lot more expensive than a 3 story building in Powell or Reynoldsburg or Marysville. While rents will be much higher to justify the development, for such a development to take place, the developer needs to put down a lot more money up front in order to get the deal off the ground. When you are talking about building a $100 million tower, it is rare to find a developer with that much liquid cash to take that risk. The lenders who would lend on such a property see Columbus as overbuilt and needing to take a pause.

 

I know you are excited about Columbus growth but the financing fundamentals that preclude or slow down this type of development has nothing to do with the growth going on, it is mostly the financing community taking a pause to catch its breath before proceeding further.

 

Dallas Ft. Worth and Denver are faster growing markets than Columbus but are going through some hyper-supply issues and development lending is slowing in those cities. It will pick up again soon if things stay strong, but it is all about letting the market absorb what is built before moving forward again.

 

Columbus' average annual growth so far this decade is 12,176.  That's 30% higher than even during the peak of the annexation years of the 1950s.  You mention 8000 units in the pipeline in the next 3 years.  A study on the region stated that at least 33,000 new units would be needed by 2030, or about 2,540 per year every year.  The 8000 is a slightly higher rate than that, but not by much.  Keep in mind that that study had to be updated due to initially underestimating regional population growth, and the 12,176 is based on estimates.  Columbus has grown faster than the estimates when the decennial census counts were done in at least the past few decades, so in all likelihood, the estimated unit need is still too low.  Furthermore, Columbus has seen MUCH higher residential construction in other years when the population was growing more slowly.  For example, single-family home construction starts are still well under what they were prior to the recession, and even apartment construction is under the rate of the apartment boom that occurred in the area in the late 1990s.  This has led to record low inventory for multiple years in a row, along with rising housing and rent prices which also continue to hit new record highs.  However, the point is even more drastic if those 8000 units are spread across the metro rather than just Columbus or Franklin County alone.  How many of those units are actually there? 

 

It seems strange for lenders to focus on areas like Delaware County in determining the market of Columbus, though.  Franklin County receives the bulk of all new population into the metro area.  It grew 4.5x faster than Delaware County in total.  It grew more than every county in the metro combined.  I would imagine that the markets are very different county to county. 

 

As I said, you just seem to be saying that they're being cautious.  There is no indication, at least in Franklin County, that new construction is having any trouble being absorbed.  The core county is where the 23,300 people moving to the metro every year largely want to be.  If lenders are taking a breather, it seems unrelated to actual market conditions. 

 

Population growth is only one factor at play here. Columbus had strong growth in 2008 and 2009 but if you remember, there was not much construction during that time. In the current environment, the development market (per the lenders view) is a bit overheated, especially given the rising interest rates and therefore, they are being much more cautious on development deals because the pipeline is full in their opinion and they want to hit the pause button. The same thing is going on in Indy too. Conversely, Cincinnati which is not growing as fast, also did not see the same hyper-supply of development going on so there is more room to lend in that market. Same is true for Cleveland and Detroit. Population growth is only part of the equation and Columbus continued population growth should in no way be considered a bad thing, but essentially, certain market conditions that a lender would like when viewing things at 30,000 feet are not in equilibrium now which is why there is a bit of financing sluggishness.

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I'd say another thing affecting height is not enough demand for Class A commercial space Downtown. Dublin, Worthington, Westerville, Polaris and Easton are still where the Boomer decision makers are putting the office jobs. I'd imagine you'd see more height if there was more in the way of office components to these buildings.

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I'd say another thing affecting height is not enough demand for Class A commercial space Downtown. Dublin, Worthington, Westerville, Polaris and Easton are still where the Boomer decision makers are putting the office jobs. I'd imagine you'd see more height if there was more in the way of office components to these buildings.

 

I think that's actually more to do with the fact that there is not as much new Class A Downtown.  Consider that there has been almost no office construction Downtown since the 1990s outside of smaller spaces in mixed-use projects, and I think a lot of companies are looking for newer, or at least recently-remodeled space.  Some of the bigger office towers are now getting renovations, and that should open the market up a bit. But yeah, the Class A that's been built recently, like in 250 High, was snatched up quickly. 

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Back on topic, folks. If you want to discuss the Columbus market, please find or create another thread.

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That gap between the Convention Center and the Hyatt was were the Columbus 3C rail station was supposed to be, wasn't it? Will this project impact the potential of a future station being built?

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That gap between the Convention Center and the Hyatt was were the Columbus 3C rail station was supposed to be, wasn't it? Will this project impact the potential of a future station being built?

 

I remember asking this same question some years ago to noozer[/member] (our local rail expert).  He didn't feel that the development in this area would prevent a future 3C rail station from being built.

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That gap between the Convention Center and the Hyatt was were the Columbus 3C rail station was supposed to be, wasn't it? Will this project impact the potential of a future station being built?

 

I remember asking this same question some years ago to noozer[/member] (our local rail expert).  He didn't feel that the development in this area would prevent a future 3C rail station from being built.

 

Yeah, there's nothing preventing a rail station from being built on top of the tracks themselves.  Would take some engineering, but entirely doable.  That said, I just don't see it happening unless that Chicago-Columbus line works out.

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^ I would love to see a rendering with Market Tower thrown in there as well. This is really going to expand our skyline when you are looking from the East or West.

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City, county officials say Hilton 2.0 would help Columbus land more national conventions, events

 

City and county officials say a planned 470-room, 22-story expansion of the Hilton Columbus Downtown could be a game-changer as Columbus vies for more national convention and events.

 

Leaders on Monday pulled the curtain back on the plans to expand the hotel with a 22-story tower along High Street, a project that is estimated to cost $165 million to $190 million.

 

If approved, work could be completed on the so-called Hilton 2.0 by 2021.

 

More below:

https://www.bizjournals.com/columbus/news/2018/03/12/city-county-officials-say-hilton-2-0-would-help.html

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View from the other side -

 

L6ptjS3.jpg

 

Now what that picture needs now is a nice matching condo/apartment/hotel/whatever on that sliver on Goodale next to the parking garage. When they were looking at sites for hotel additions didn't they have a map showing that something was already planned for the site so it was not in contention? I remember something like that but have heard nothing about that sliver. 

 

I also keep wanting them to add a few more floors to this...but maybe I am just being greedy lol.

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Agreement coming together to finance 23-story Hilton tower downtown

 

unknown*750xx2475-1392-0-129.jpg

 

The agreement is coming together to fund the proposed 23-story tower to expand the Hilton Columbus Downtown.

 

After a year of negotiations, Columbus City Council, the Franklin County Board of Commissioners and the Franklin County Convention Facilities Authority have crafted a memorandum of understanding to structure the financing for the expansion, which is expected to cost $180 million to $200 million.

 

More below:

https://www.bizjournals.com/columbus/news/2018/05/23/agreement-coming-together-to-finance-23-story.html

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Walking by the Convention Center today and noticed they have installed some living walls along the portions of the High St side of the building where it connects to the Hyatt.

 

A welcome addition, I really wish more places around downtown would consider doing this (looking at you Ohio Theatre facing the Commons).

 

JmcHmMfh.jpg

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^ The green walls at the convention center look good, I think they'll grow in nicely there and improve the whole feel of that drop off area. The entire renovation project was really well done actually

 

And agreed 100% about the backside of the Ohio Theater... I can't believe CDDC is content to leave that as-is to be honest

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Yes but I imagine CAPA doesn't care how the back looks (and probably doesn't have the money to spare even if they did). It mostly affects the commons, so just guessing that CDDC would need to foot the bill for any improvements

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Walking by the Convention Center today and noticed they have installed some living walls along the portions of the High St side of the building where it connects to the Hyatt.

 

A welcome addition, I really wish more places around downtown would consider doing this (looking at you Ohio Theatre facing the Commons).

 

JmcHmMfh.jpg

 

I really like this, and hope they can continue adding things like this, art, etc to the main part of the convention center along High. Good start at least if anything.

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Convention center's new garage designed to 'flow' with the wind

 

"Designers say the 650-space parking garage that will serve the Greater Columbus Convention Center will feature a mesh exterior that moves with the wind.

 

Schooley Caldwell Architects is refining plans for the Ohio Center Garage that will serve the convention center and the planned expansion of the Hilton Columbus Downtown hotel next door. Notably, the new drawings include a “flowing” facade."

 

garage-a*1024xx1125-633-0-32.png

 

https://www.bizjournals.com/columbus/news/2018/09/26/convention-center-garage-designed-to-flow-with-the.html?ana=e_me_set1&s=newsletter&ed=2018-09-26&u=8jkupSw9zIRhc%2BySqW4WOQ0354f4c7&t=1537964020&j=84038991

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Convention center's new garage designed to 'flow' with the wind

 

"Designers say the 650-space parking garage that will serve the Greater Columbus Convention Center will feature a mesh exterior that moves with the wind.

 

Schooley Caldwell Architects is refining plans for the Ohio Center Garage that will serve the convention center and the planned expansion of the Hilton Columbus Downtown hotel next door. Notably, the new drawings include a “flowing” facade."

 

garage-a*1024xx1125-633-0-32.png

 

https://www.bizjournals.com/columbus/news/2018/09/26/convention-center-garage-designed-to-flow-with-the.html?ana=e_me_set1&s=newsletter&ed=2018-09-26&u=8jkupSw9zIRhc%2BySqW4WOQ0354f4c7&t=1537964020&j=84038991

 

They snuck in this little bit about the new 22-story Hilton 2.0:

 

"The Franklin County Convention Facilities Authority continues to work through design work on the hotel expansion, which has seen projected cost estimates from $165 million to $200 million. The authority retained JLL as development consultant to help it plan and refine the plans. Its latest projections show significant construction work next year and completion by 2021."

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They snuck in this little bit about the new 22-story Hilton 2.0:

 

"The Franklin County Convention Facilities Authority continues to work through design work on the hotel expansion, which has seen projected cost estimates from $165 million to $200 million. The authority retained JLL as development consultant to help it plan and refine the plans. Its latest projections show significant construction work next year and completion by 2021."

 

I recently saw some updated renderings for the new Hilton expansion tower. The design is looking much sleeker than the original conceptual rendering. Seemed like the floorplates were a little larger and the building a couple stories shorter as well.

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They snuck in this little bit about the new 22-story Hilton 2.0:

 

"The Franklin County Convention Facilities Authority continues to work through design work on the hotel expansion, which has seen projected cost estimates from $165 million to $200 million. The authority retained JLL as development consultant to help it plan and refine the plans. Its latest projections show significant construction work next year and completion by 2021."

 

I recently saw some updated renderings for the new Hilton expansion tower. The design is looking much sleeker than the original conceptual rendering. Seemed like the floorplates were a little larger and the building a couple stories shorter as well.

 

Nice! I didn't really mind the early renderings but I thought there was certainly some room for improvement. Was the reduction in height noticeable?

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They snuck in this little bit about the new 22-story Hilton 2.0:

 

"The Franklin County Convention Facilities Authority continues to work through design work on the hotel expansion, which has seen projected cost estimates from $165 million to $200 million. The authority retained JLL as development consultant to help it plan and refine the plans. Its latest projections show significant construction work next year and completion by 2021."

 

Yep, they opened up RFQ bidding for specific pieces of the project already.

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Convention center's new garage designed to 'flow' with the wind

 

"Designers say the 650-space parking garage that will serve the Greater Columbus Convention Center will feature a mesh exterior that moves with the wind.

 

Schooley Caldwell Architects is refining plans for the Ohio Center Garage that will serve the convention center and the planned expansion of the Hilton Columbus Downtown hotel next door. Notably, the new drawings include a “flowing” facade."

 

garage-a.png

 

https://www.bizjournals.com/columbus/news/2018/09/26/convention-center-garage-designed-to-flow-with-the.html

 

I was trying to figure out where this new garage was going.  This map from that same Business First article helps:

 

garage-d.png

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