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Liberty Pens Lease at Hanover Crossing

Zacks Equity Research

Liberty Property Trust (LPT) sealed a lease deal with Kawneer Company Inc. for 30,000 square feet of space at Hanover Crossing at New Ridge Road. This deal, which has been sketched prior to the completion of the building, reflects the strong demand for Class A industrial space in the Baltimore/Washington Corridor.

Hanover Crossing at New Ridge Road is the company’s new business park and it enjoys close proximity to major transportation networks. In particular, the lease deal is signed at 7460 New Ridge Road. It is expected to be complete in May 2014 and will offer 117,500 square feet of space. Another sister building, 7462 New Ridge Road, which is also under construction, will offer 126,000 square feet of space.

As a matter of fact, the Baltimore/Washington industrial corridor is one of the key markets for this real estate invest trust (:REIT). Over 9.3 million people reside and work in this area and according to the 2010 U.S. Census, it is the fourth largest metropolitan area in the nation and boasts the highest median household income and spending power.

Moreover, in recent times, product delivery to customers has become a major zone for combat for the ecommerce companies. They are gearing up their business to offer same day delivery service to woo customers. Therefore, along with the favorable demographics, this has paved the way for the growth in demand for Class-A facilities.

Strategically, Liberty is making concerted efforts to strengthen its business in this region. As part of these efforts, last year, the company acquired 18 acres of land that would support future development of up to 220,000 square feet of multi-tenant industrial space in Hanover. Moreover, with the acquisition of a national industrial portfolio, the company purchased industrial space spanning 1.4 million square feet in 16 buildings.

Liberty Property currently carries a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold). Investors interested in the REIT industry may also consider Cousins Properties Incorporated (CUZ), Duke Realty Corporation (DRE) and Public Storage (PSA). All these stocks carry a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy).

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