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40 Companies to Watch in 2014

The Arizona commercial real estate industry saw some exciting announcements in 2013 — from Apple moving into the former First Solar facility in Mesa to the State Farm campus and USA Basketball headquarters moving $1B of development to Tempe. Additionally, thousands of square feet of existing builds have been repurposed in Arizona. From company growth of as much as 80 percent to 150-year anniversaries of being in business and announcements of innovative building techniques and public offerings, the local industry has taken optimistic leaps in 2013 and proven a knack for adaptability that will sustain in 2014. If this is what the state’s brightest and most resilient can achieve when the economy is still in stages of recovery, imagine what’s on the drawing tables waiting to be unveiled this year or next.
Every year, AZRE recognizes the companies that have made a mark on the industry and will continue to do so.

Adolfson & Peterson was awarded a pre-construction contract development for Lofts at Hayden Ferry and recently broke ground on Residencies at Fountainhead Corporate Plaza.

AME Landscape Companies until December 2013, was better known as AME Southwest. Since AME started in 1973, it has grown from two to 100 trucks with 250 employees. Expect to hear from the new and improved AME in 2014.

Butler Design Group, winner of Architectural Firm of the Year at the RED Awards in 2013, plans to expand its staff in 2014 and see its plans for the 10 Lincoln business park, measuring in at 1MSF on 72 acres, come to life.

Caretaker Landscape and Tree Management saw record-breaking revenue in the landscape construction marketplace in 2013, and approved projects for 2014 already match its 2013 revenue numbers. Caretaker’s landscape maintenance and tree management divisions report 2014 looks more promising.

Chasse Building Team constructed more than $85M in 2013, including three multi-family projects and a two-year renovation of Mohave Middle School. Two of the projects included urban in-fill for Native American Connection. Future construction includes a 37KSF office in Goodyear and learning facility at West-MEC.

Cushman & Wakefield of Arizona forges into 2014 riding the momentum of its capital markets group, which totaled almost $420M in sales in 2013. Major deals included the Cigna Corporate Campus at Norterra and Biltmore Commerce Center.

DAVIS Architecture in 2014 equates to the continual cultivation of its client relationships and on-going standard for design, cost optimization and technical acumen. DAVIS will broaden its presence in other market sectors as well as focusing on the expansion of the DAVIS brand, according to a company spokesman. It also designed the 2MSF, $600M Marina Heights project in Tempe.

De Rito Partners has 31 brokers exclusively representing more than 220 shopping center owners and 60 national and local retailers. It is currently redeveloping 1.1 MSF at The Pavilions at Talking Stick, manages 32 properties totalling more than 725,000 SF and recently purchased 47 retail assets.

DIRTT, the “technology company that happens to be in the construction business,” went public on the Toronto exchange at the end of 2013. It’s revolutionizing the way offices and healthcare facilities are designed — adaptable, multi-purpose and cost-effective with as little of a footprint as possible.

DMB Associates executed 28 leases totaling 142,319 SF and four sales totaling $83.48M in 2013. Grand Canyon University announced last year its intent to build a 100-acre, $150M satellite campus that’s scheduled to open in 2015 on DMB’s Eastmark master planned community. Also at Eastmark, Apple purchased a former First Solar plant, renovations of which are underway. Looking forward, Eastmark, with Phoenix Commercial Advisors, plans to develop its first commercial development at the community. Eastmark will also see additional developments enter new phases and completition throughout the year.

Clear Title expects growth of 10 to 15 percent in 2014 as the market continues to contract. Clear Title will reportedly add two new branches in 2014 with intent to outpace its competition with growth in revenue and market share.

Coreslab Structures has increased its workforce by 80 percent since January 2013. It also fabricated and erected 100KSF of architectural precast for two projects in 2013. Looking into Corelab’s 25th year, expect to hear about its architectural precast for office and commercial buildings (which comprises 35 percent of the company’s work).

DNG Construction  may only be eight months into operation (it opened for business in April 2013), but the 100 percent cloud-based firm has 70 years of construction experience between its key personnel and put it to use in 2013 with a construction management contract with a national organization and design-build projects. In 2014, DNG will focus on recruitment.

D.P. Electric  completed more than $20M in contracts in 2013, including projects at Continuum, Aetna and CyrusOne. The company also saw growth in its mission critical and renewable energy departments. The goal for 2014 is to maintain steady manageable growth while supporting our current backlog of more than $10M.

DPR’S Regional Manager Dave Elrod says, “As we round out 2013, completing ASU’s McCord Hall W.P. Carey School of Business, along with breaking ground mid-year on ASU’s Arizona Center for Law and Society, and completing the Banner MD Anderson Cancer Center Phase II, we expect the upcoming year to be a robust sales year.”

Evergreen Development celebrates its 40th anniversary this year. Evergreen managed 2MSF last year and broke ground on multiple restaurants and Walgreens throughout Arizona. Expect the same voracious development in 2014, including a 27-acre mixed-use development in Flagstaff and a 150-unit Phoenix apartment community. It plans to sell Goodyear Centerpointe and multiple residential developments in Phoenix.

Gensler  will unveil the 130KSF Block 12 Project and new home to the Del E. Webb School of Construction before ASU’s 2014 fall semester. The project will give a whole new meaning to “buildings are living things,” as its walls will contain sensors that monitor the way the building interacts with its surroundings.

Haydon Building Corp more than doubled its staff over the course of three years. In 2014, Haydon will complete the Morenci Community Center, Copper Sky Recreation Complex Park, and Papago Readiness Center, and break ground on the Casa Grande Community Center and NAU Center for Aquatics and Tennis.

GPE, which has more CCIMs per capita than any other firm in Arizona, had more than $2.5B in transactions in 2013, represented 9MSF, saw 1.6MSF absorbed and 90 percent tenant retention. GPE reported that it executed more than 700 leases, valued at $225M, in the last three years.

Land Advisors had a notable year in 2013, closing more than $1.5B in land transactions across the country. In 2014, Land Advisors plans to expand its brokerage capabilities, open two to three new locations and strengthen its presence in both the site selection and capital markets segments.

Layton Construction’s 26-year history in the Valley includes the ups and downs of the economy, but there is new economic life, symbolized by completion of a Marshalls Distribution Center, a Macy’s expansion and other private and public sector work, such as the MCC performing arts center.

Liberty Property Trust broke ground in early December on the first of 11 planned buildings at Liberty Center at the 100-acre Rio Salado business park in Tempe. The company owns and manages 2.8MSF of space in Arizona.

Lincoln Property Company is bringing 5,000 jobs to the Valley. As of October, only 10 percent of Goodyear Airpark’s  189-square miles are developed, but it has the potential to bring 4,000 jobs. Business park 10 Lincoln is expected to bring 1,000.

Healthcare Trust of America manages 13.6 MSF within 27 states and is the largest owner of MOB in Arizona. HTA invested approximately $272M in 2013 — a 10 percent expansion of its asset base.

Johnson Carlier saw 42 percent growth in 2013 and is counting on more opportunities in 2014. This 93-year-old company plans to stay in market sectors such as automotive, industrial and public works projects while developing others such as healthcare, retail and higher education.

McCarthy Building Co., for 150 years, has made a point to construct essential projects that communities rely on, as well as by helping those in the communities who need assistance. Knowing how to build from pre-construction through completion is a tradition McCarthy will continue as it endeavors to advance the value of its expertise and final project costs. “At McCarthy, we’re just getting started,” writes press representative Patty Johnson.

Jones Lang LaSalle added 13 licensed brokers to its roster in 2013 and increased its transaction volume by 22 percent over 2012, including 13 property sales. In December, JLL was named a “Best Places to Work” for the fourth consecutive year.

Michael Pollack celebrated his 40th anniversary by purchasing and transforming shopping centers. Most will be finished in 2014, including the Pollack Gilbert Ray Plaza, which should resemble an old western town when completed.

Liberty Property Trust owns and manages 2.8MSF of space and recently broke ground on the 100-acre Liberty Center at Rio Salado business park in Tempe.

Parkway Properties is a premier owner-operator of office buildings throughout the Sunbelt, leasing more than 1.8 MSF during the first three quarters of 2013. Parkway expects to continue its expansion in 2014 through its recently closed merger with Thomas Properties Group, and in Arizona specifically with the planned development of Hayden Ferry III, a 260,000 SF Class-A office tower.

RED Development built on a year of new promise in Arizona in 2013, from new residential units at CityScape — set for move-in this January to The Shops at Hilton Village. In Flagstaff, RED brought REI to the mixed-use Aspen Place at The Sawmill. For 2014, opportunities include elevating two well-positioned properties, Camelback Colonnade and Town & Country.

Rosendin Electric cemented its position as the largest privately held electrical engineering and contracting firm in North America this year. With revenues projected to surpass $1B in 2014, Arizona remains one of its key markets with local backlog of several hundred million dollars headed into 2014. Rosendin the general contractor and electrical engineer of record on the much publicized retrofit of the former First Solar site in Mesa.

Ryan Companies and its co-developer Sunbelt Holdings have a big few years ahead of it. Marina Heights, the 2 MSF multi-use office development owned by Arizona State University, became the largest office development deal in Arizona history. The construction costs are $600M, and thousands of jobs will be created.

SRS Real Estate Partners’ Phoenix office represented clients’ transactions in excess of 6MSF in 2013, including the sale of a 73-acre parcel to accommodate an 850,000 SF Winco Foods Distribution Center and two new locations for Burlington Coat Factory totaling more than 134,000 SF. SRS Phoenix represents in excess of 3.5 MSF in landlord representation and supports 75 clients in tenant r epresentation, including NextCare, PetSense, Café Rio and 18/8 Men’s Salon.

Sunbelt Holdings will co-develop the 2MSF, $600M Marina Heights project with Ryan Companies as well as the master-planned communities La Estancia, Laveen Vistas, Windrose and has invested in a condominium development Portland in the Park.

Suntec was named No. 1 specialty contractor in the Southwest by ENR Southwest. With a young employee base of 500, it plans to develop the next generation of builders.

NorthMarq has provided mortgage banking and commercial loan servicing in Arizona for more than 30 years. Its notable recent Arizona transactions include State Farm Tempe Operations Center, Pinnacle Peak Commerce Center and Stetson Village. The Phoenix office has completed transactions totaling $400M in the last 12 months.

Velocity Retail Group grew its leadership team with industry veterans during the past year. A record amount of big box space was leased in 2013, and the company is representing an influx of new retailers entering the Phoenix marketplace.

Wells Fargo announced its Chandler campus expansion of 410KSF this year, which broke ground in December and will double the bank’s prescence along the Price Corridor. Expected job growth is 2,500 employees.

Willmeng Construction, Inc. won NAIOP Office Project of the Year for InfusionSoft and continued its commitment of multiple charities in 2013. Its goal of supporting transactions, big and small, from pre-letter-of-intent to certificate of occupancy will continue to be the 37-year-old company’s focus in 2013.

NAI Horizon has provided a range of commercial real estate services for 23 years. In 2014, it will continue to expand in all areas, including opening an additional office in Tucson.

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Amanda Ventura

About Amanda Ventura

Amanda Ventura is an editor, award-winning writer and pop culture enthusiast. When she's not up against deadlines, she is exploring Arizona, trying recipes that require every dish in her kitchen be used, collecting 5K swag bags and race numbers and volunteering at a local animal shelter. Her bookshelf is full of autobiographies and her desk is covered in Sticky Notes. She dislikes the Oxford comma and still cannot believe she gets to meet and write about interesting people for a living.

One thought on “40 Companies to Watch in 2014

  1. Stephanie Gomez

    Gensler’s honored to be part of this list!

    We are excited for the ASU College Avenue Commons (formerly called Block 12) project to be finished this year. The project has been a collaborative design effort of Gensler | Architekton!

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