17 Aug The PAVE Analysis for Detroit is Rising by the Moment – Position, Access, Visibility and Energy
Years ago, while I was training at Taubman, I was told to read a book called “Why We Buy”by Paco Underhill. Something about this book changed the way I view the world. Everywhere I go, I am more in tune with the little details that effect the way people interact with one another and ultimately conduct business. Whether thinking about the next great restaurant location or creating marketing collateral for our latest listings, the details are where the differentiators are between good real estate and ICONIC real estate.
When I walk through the malls, as much as I am interested in what new stores have arrived and what the latest fashion trends are, I am also focused on what bags (if any) are in the hands of the shopper, who that shopper is, what does he or she look like, what other brands are they supporting, and how is the mall different from the last time I was here, are all thoughts that go through my head, I put my PAVE analysis to use on the entire mall, the shoppers and the individual storefronts.
As I write this, I am sitting at Astro Coffee which sits more or less across the street fromMichigan Central Station where earlier this week, Ford Motor Company released its preliminary renovation numbers of $740mm. This coffee shop has been in Corktown for several years and historically attracted mostly young spirited Detroiters that lived in or near Corktown. The dress code for men was nicely worn boots, heavy denim and a faded t-shirt, not necessarily vintage, the food offerings were limited, and in general the line was short but consistent. Contrast that to today and the 6 people in front of me were in suits, no not vintage sharkskin suits with finely groomed facial hair, but what you would probably consider “upper management”. The woman behind me, I knew but hadn’t seen in years, was on her way in to Channel 4 having just arrived downtown from her suburban commute. The stream of customers is robust and diverse, the mustache crowd has not gone to the wayside, but there seems to be a lot more polish on the crowd now a days. Is it Ford, is it just a thriving Detroit looking for a good cup of Joe, it’s probably both.
This week I was on several walking tours around downtown showing our various listings, 2040 Park Avenue above Cliff Bell’s a gorgeous 7000 SF space on the doorstep to the Filmore, Fox and Comerica Park, Ford Building retail and office space, 35 E. Grand River, 305 Michigan Ave and 1307 Broadway. We all hear stories of Detroit coming back, but the proof is in the pudding (or the people). Everywhere you look there are exponentially more people on the street than the years before. The new Bird scooters are flying about and more and more shopping bags from Lululemon, Moosejaw and now G-star Raw fill the streets as we gear up for the opening of the new Shinola Hotel this fall.
The PAVE analysis for Detroit is rising by the moment. Position: growth, Access: constantly improving, Visibility: the world is watching, and the Energy: is undeniable.
Kees Janeway – Managing Partner, ICONIC Real Estate