Jacksonville’s retail market bustled with new business in 2014 and experts predict next year to be just as vibrant.
More aggresive expansion is expected to take place among local, regional and national restaurants going into 2015 due to an increase in local consumer spending.
“I see 2015 being the year North Florida sees the chef-driven restaurateurs step up their game… almost all have their eye on the urban core including Riverside, San Marco and the Northbank,” said Carrie Smith, regional managing director at Franklin Street.
Most of the independent local business owners who have been sitting on the sidelines following the recession are active again and ultimately will lose out on opportunities if they don’t act quickly.
Smith also expects to see new developments, mostly in non-anchored retail strips, which until a few years ago were virtually nonexistent. Redevelopment will be strong in 2015, as well, with announced projects in Mandarin and the Beaches.
On the flip side, big box and anchor-driven developments will be less prominent than small shop development in 2015. “We see that picking up speed in 2016,” Smith said.
The St. Johns Town Center also has a lot of new development buzz circulating around it, particularly mixed-use developments.
National retailers will still seek out any and all opportunities they can to get near the Town Center but timing will play a big part in who lands where.