Multi-Story Warehouses Are the Future

By John Morris

Over the last several years, the industrial real estate market has registered the strongest run on record. Thanks to economic growth, both domestic and global, and the advancement of eCommerce, Cushman & Wakefield is predicting continued growth for the sector through 2019. The challenge? Space is at a premium. It’s more difficult than ever to find suitable infill locations for clients in need of distribution centers. As we work to answer our client’s needs, a new concept has emerged in the U.S. – multi-story warehouses. These logistics facilities are popping up in New York City and Seattle to answer consumer demand for fast, last mile delivery in high density, urban areas.

Multi-story warehouses aren’t new. They have been used in Asia for quite some time. But here in the U.S., suburban distribution centers with land at low costs were the norm. Amazon changed that with Prime Now and free two-day delivery, causing other online retailers to increase shipping speeds to stay competitive.

This need to maximize land space to handle more product is making developers rethink what facilities look like. They are beginning to construct buildings with truck ramps and docks on multiple floors, and without any significant limitations, there’s nowhere to go but up.

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