2015: What a year for Mobile

With all the various ranking and awards Alabama received throughout 2015, it’s no surprise Mobile, Alabama had an amazing year!

Mobile, Alabama

As Stirling Properties’ Vice President & Regional Manager for Alabama/Florida, a member of the Mobile Area Chamber of Commerce and a member of the Chamber’s Board of Advisors, I was thrilled with all that Mobile accomplished this past year. Here are just a few of the more notable moments from 2015.

Airbus’s U.S. Manufacturing Facility at Mobile Aeroplex opened its first U.S. manufacturing facility on September 14, 2015. By 2018, the facility will produce between 40 and 50 single-aisle aircrafts per year.

GulfQuest National Maritime Museum of the Gulf of Mexico opened on September 26, 2015 and provided a huge impact to the area’s tourism economy.

The Alabama Department of Transportation awarded the I-10 Mobile River Bridge design/engineering contract to Thompson Engineering. This will increase the capacity of I-10 and meet the existing and predicted future traffic volumes.

The Manufacturing Communities Grant was implemented and Mobile was named one of only 12 federally-designated manufacturing communities in 2015. Over the past 5 years, manufacturing jobs in Mobile have increased by 38%, with a 22.9% increase in manufacturing wages.

1702, a group of chief executive officers and business leaders, was established to create an entrepreneurial community that showcases Mobile as one of the best cities for groundbreaking companies. The St. Louis street innovative corridor for tech savvy startups is becoming a reality.

The city executed a 13 month contract for the return of Carnival Cruise Lines starting in November 2016. This promises a huge economic impact to the city.

Mobile Chamber of Commerce surveyed their Partners for Growth Investors. The results showed that between January 2014 and June 2015 2,148 new jobs were created and during that time $936 million was invested in capital.

Stirling Properties is committed to serving Alabama and the Gulf South and we are proud to be one of Mobile’s top commercial real estate firms. We are excited about the great things to come in 2016 to Mobile!

January 11, 2016|Alabama, Blog, Rankings|

Louisiana Continues to be Recognized in National Rankings

Baton RougeICSCAs the International Council of Shopping Center’s (ICSC’s) State Director for Louisiana, I recently contributed an article for our Quarterly Membership Newsletter that I’d like to share:

Louisiana State Director’s Message – Summer 2015

I have written many times in recent newsletters about Louisiana’s economic development growth and I can’t help myself but to continue to report the good news.  Our State continues to be on an unprecedented roll for economic growth and diversification that is really changing our trajectory in a way that is having extreme benefits on our industry, our career, our families and our long term well-being.  The progress and growth is not going unnoticed, this summer’s publications have bestowed some significant rankings and milestones.

For the 6th straight year, Southern Business and Development has ranked Louisiana #1 among Southern states for attracting the most significant capital investment and job-creation projects per million residents.  In the State of the Year category, Louisiana earned honorable mention.  While not receiving State of the Year this year, Louisiana has earned State or Co-State of the Year honors in five of the past seven years.  In addition our cities are being recognized individually as well.

  • 2015 Small Market of the Year (Pop < 250K) – Lake Charles
    • Honorable Mention – Houma-Thibodaux
  • 2015 Major Market of the Year (Pop 750K – 2M)
    • Honorable Mentions – New Orleans & Baton Rouge
  • 2015 Mid-Market of the Year (Pop 250K – 750K)
    • Honorable Mention – Shreveport

In June Area Development magazine awarded Louisiana the 2015 Silver Shovel Award (Pop 3M to 5M category) for posting one of the best economic development performances in the U.S. during the past year.  The awards honor states with the most significant impact from their 10 leading investment and job creation projects during 2014.  This is our State’s 6th year in a row earning a Silver Shovel Award.

In May Chief Executive magazine honored Louisiana with its highest ranking ever in its CEO survey of state business climates, ranking #7 on Best & Worst States for Business.  This is up 40 positions since January 2008, representing the greatest improvement of any state in that time period.  Additionally, Site Selection magazine picked Louisiana No. 2 in U.S. for economic development competitiveness in 2014 with 7 of the top 10 states located in the Southeast, which points to the region’s sustained competitiveness over the past decade.

All of this just a decade after most of the nation had written Louisiana off for dead following Hurricanes Katrina and Rita in the summer of 2005, quite remarkable to say the least.  This is not only encouraging for our personal businesses but also inspiring for the business community in our State.  I see the retail industry as a huge beneficiary of this success during this past decade with even brighter days ahead.

August 3, 2015|Blog, Market Research, Rankings|

Stirling Properties Ranks Among Top 10 Commercial Real Estate Firms in Alabama

Business Alabama recently published their 2015 Top Rank issue and I am happy to report that just a year and a half after opening our first office in Mobile, Alabama, Stirling Properties is ranked among the Top 10 Commercial Real Estate Firms in the State of Alabama.

Since establishing our Mobile office in October 2013, we have worked tirelessly to expand our presence throughout Alabama and eastward into the Florida market. Here are a few highlights:

We now total over 2.5 million square-feet of managed properties and 34 employees/brokers in Alabama and Florida – in just a year and a half. I am extremely proud of our latest Alabama ranking and, most importantly, what the Stirling Team has accomplished in the Alabama and Florida markets over this short time frame. We are strongly committed to serving the entire Gulf South and look forward to serving our clients throughout Alabama and Florida from our Mobile, Pensacola and Mary Esther/Fort Walton Beach offices.

Stay tuned for another exciting announcement in the next few weeks!

Forbes: Houma-Thibodaux among America’s Booming Small Cities 2014

Forbes has ranked Houma-Thibodaux the #8 fastest growing small city in the country, featuring the lowest unemployment rate in the USA at 2.8% and per capita personal income growth of nearly 50% from 2000 to 2012.

This ranking on the heels of the recent rankings of Baton Rouge #2, Mobile #3 and New Orleans #5 for Economic Growth Potential by Business Facilities magazine once again demonstrates the tremendous strength and growth of our entire super region.  The Top 10 ranking of the Houma-Thibodaux area underscores the primary motivation for our recent acquisition of Ansley Place Apartments in Houma earlier this year.

You can read the entire Forbes article here.

Houma-Thibodaux #8


Forbes: New Orleans #1 for “Brainpower” in the USA

Another ranking was recently announced that reinforces the growing trend of New Orleans being one of the leading places for young people to locate.  It is one of the most exciting transformations I have ever seen and one of the most encouraging signs for our future.

Forbes has ranked Greater New Orleans tied for first in America for growth in college grads from 2007 – 2012, earning the title #1 “Brainpower City” in the USA.  The New Orleans metro gained 44,000 grads from 2007 to 2012, a 20.3% increase, nearly double the national average of 10.9%.  The author of the article, Joel Kotkin, explains that Greater New Orleans is the leader of a broader national trend:  “Unable to afford to settle long-term in traditional “brain centers,” educated people are increasingly looking for places that have strong economies but also many of the cultural and natural amenities associated with the traditional meccas for the educated.”

The Top 10 “Brainpower Cities” in the USA are:

1. New Orleans metro
1. San Antonio (tie)
3. Austin
4. Nashville
5. Louisville
6. Houston
7. Denver
8. Salt Lake City
9. Jacksonville
10. Raleigh

 You can read the entire article here.Forbes - Brainpower Cities

ACREcon Keynote Presentation

Last week I traveled to Birmingham to deliver the keynote address at ACREcon, the annual conference hosted by the Alabama Center for Real Estate (ACRE).  ACRE is a well-organized, statewide commercial real estate group and I was honored to be asked to speak at their event.  I was very impressed with the meeting and the record-setting attendance.

During the presentation, I introduced myself and Stirling Properties to many in the ACREcon audience who weren’t familiar with us and discussed our decision to open an office in Mobile – our first in Alabama.  Emphasizing the importance of regionalism, I also discussed the rise of the Gulf Coast into the National spotlight and the significant economic drivers that are shaping the region’s future growth.

Click the image below to view the presentation slides from my keynote.

ACREcon 2014 Keynote

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