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Washington, D.C., is a tenant’s market: Expert

May 23, 2019

Landlords in the Washington, D.C., area are offering tenant allowances in the triple digits to attract the right food-and-beverage operators, said Hugo Gilbert, Cushman & Wakefield’s director of retail services for that market, at RECon. More landlords are comfortable taking a risk on fast-casual and food-and-beverage operators because the restaurant sales in the D.C. market are so high, and because so many new residential buildings need food and retail tenants to serve as amenities.

“Successful landlords understand it’s not just about the economics of the deal but [about] the bigger picture,” Gilbert said. Retailers, for their part, are pickier than ever, taking a wait-and-see approach to new space, he said. Entertainment concepts are growing in the district, while supermarket chains continue to move into the suburbs, he noted. “We’re experiencing a lot of development, a lot of emerging markets," he said. "Twenty years ago activity was concentrated in three or four retail submarkets. It’s more than double that number now.”

By Brannon Boswell

Executive Editor, Commerce + Communities Today