From Boston Landing to Landmark Center, Seaport Square to North Station, the message on NAIOP‘s 12th anniversary Bus Tour was clear and consistent. Boston is the overwhelming focus of developers. The city and surrounding neighborhoods will soon witness delivery of some of the largest, most complex development projects in recent history.
The sold out event drew more than 250 developers, investors, brokers and real estate professionals from Boston and beyond. Committee Vice Chair Ben Hux of JLL kicked off the Tour’s morning presentation at the WGBH studios.
In JLL New England Market Director Jim Tierney’s Boston overview, he added “invest” to the city’s familiar live/work/play trilogy.
“Boston is on everyone’s short list of places to invest,” Jim said. “With every passing economic cycle, we have come out stronger and more diversified. The key is to continue to evolve and compete to make Boston the place of choice for top talent.”
Ben emphasized job growth in his Downtown overview. “Office-using employment added 18,000 jobs last year,” he said. “Going forward, Boston’s employment base is poised to expand in a diverse and dynamic manner.
“Both high tech and life sciences now have employment levels that are 10 and 30 percent higher respectively than they were a decade ago.”
Captains shared their knowledge of hundreds of properties during the half-day event with candor and humor. For example, did you know that before Kenmore Square’s CITGO sign was upgraded it was comprised of five miles of neon tubing? Or that Samuels & Associates’ new Verb Hotel in the Fenway, scheduled to open in June, will have a vintage 1950’s tour bus out front?
The event was not without a scary moment. A car overturned in front of the fleet of six buses just as the caravan was ready to depart from Brighton. The driver was quickly removed from the vehicle shaken but uninjured, and the tour began on schedule and without a hitch.