Every year NAIOP Seattle hosts the Real Estate Challenge (REC), where students from several U.S. and Canadian universities are invited to propose a viable redevelopment strategy. Running from December to March, the teams need to research, analyze, and plan the project from start to finish. This year they had to create an adaptive reuse development proposal for the Malt House parcel, located at the Original Rainier Brewery site in Georgetown, Seattle.
A growing community, Georgetown has experienced an influx of entrepreneurs who have created a vibrant restaurant and bar scene. This diverse and budding commercial activity has helped to catalyze new construction and property renovation in the neighborhood after years of little growth. In addition, this revitalized corner of Seattle offers flexible mixed-use space with a trendy historic vibe.
The winning pitch went to nine students from the UBC Sauder School of Business, who conducted extensive market research and financial analysis, modeled pro formas and building designs, and reviewed regulatory and zoning considerations in order to create their proposal. They also gained feedback on their ideas from brokers and industry mentors in Vancouver and Seattle, and delivered a series of presentations to professionals in preparation for the finals. A final report was presented at the competition in Seattle, which was reviewed by industry experts and a judging panel.
Referring to the project as ‘Malt & Kiln’, the Sauder School of Business team had a thorough and impressive proposal, forecasting 24 months for planning and entitlements, 18 months for construction, and 24 months for lease-up. They estimated the development would stabilize in year 6, with an expected hold period of 10 years.
To achieve this, the students suggested subdividing the existing Malt House lot into two parcels. They felt a subdivision would dramatically improve the profitability and performance of Malt & Kiln, creating an additional 25,000 square feet of office space. Because Georgetown was growing a thriving business community, the commercial promise would help solidify income.
Subdividing also meant they could maximize accessory use limits and meet financial objectives. Their goal was to attract an entertainment and retail anchor, such as a bowling alley, that would add to this unique, heritage environment. This, matched with office space across two buildings connected by a courtyard, would allow corporate tenants to both work and play in the same space.
At last month’s Breakfast event, the UBC students presented their winning Malt & Kiln proposal, and each received a $900 scholarship for their efforts through the NAIOP Vancouver's scholarship program. Our organization has pledged to donate $50,000 over five years for scholarships to UBC and BCIT students. Each year for five years we give up to 10 scholarships to UBC REC students, and two scholarships to second year BCIT students. We believe the best way for NAIOP Vancouver to give back to the community is to support our students, who will eventually become full-fledged members of the commercial real estate industry.
To learn more, visit the Sauder School of Business Real Estate Division website.