Weekly Market Report

Apr 4, 2024 | 0 comments

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Restaurant & Retail Updates

It appears that a popular theme restaurant that started in Davenport, Iowa, has its sights set on northwest Omaha. Machine Shed, LLC has purchased a 1.93-acre site at 18252 Evans Street. That’s the southwest corner of 182nd & West Maple Road and in front of a planned Fleet Farm store. The Machine Shed’s slogan is “A restaurant honoring America’s Farmers.”

The restaurant is owned by Moline, Illinois-based Heart of America Group, which owns several restaurant concepts including Johnny’s Italian Steakhouse, which has an Omaha location at Village Pointe. The Machine Shed has six locations in Illinois, Iowa, Minnesota and Wisconsin. The closest existing one is in Urbandale, Iowa.

The former Culprit Café space at 16th & Farnam Street downtown is being converted into a tapas and wine bar concept to be known as “Cattle Call.” Opening is planned for this spring.

Mahogany Prime Steakhouse has completed its move from 137th & California Street to 225 North 145th Street in Heartwood Preserve. The fine-dining restaurant has been in the Omaha market since 2003. Part of Oklahoma-based Hal Smith Restaurants, Mahogany also has locations in Tulsa and Oklahoma City.

Lazy Buffalo BBQ plans to open next Wednesday in the former Kathmandu Momo Station space at 3924 Farnam Street. The live-fire barbeque restaurant will be connected to Scriptown Brewing Company. Kathmandu Momo Station is moving to a downtown space near the popular Block 16 restaurant west of 16th & Farnam Street.

Construction is well underway and the new building is mostly enclosed for the future Hotpot 88 restaurant at 2502 South 130th Avenue. The Asian cuisine restaurant is located on the site where Stoysich House of Sausage once stood.

Runza will open a new restaurant April 19th at 710 South Locust Street in Glenwood, Iowa. The 6,000 sq. ft. building will also include a Pizza Hut that will open soon as well.

Starbuck’s has opened a new coffee shop in Heartwood Preserve just west of the Boys Town post office on the northwest corner of Canopy Avenue & Overlook Drive.

We have an opening date for the Costco Wholesale store under construction southeast of 180th & West Maple Road: sometime this July. The new building is now mostly enclosed. It will be the metro area’s third Costco and is expected to relieve traffic at the 123rd & West Dodge Road location.

Tim Nicholson, chef at The Boiler Room, has been named a finalist for the James Beard Award for best chef in the Midwest, according to the Omaha World-Herald. The winners will be announced at the James Beard Restaurant and Chef Awards Ceremony June 10th in Chicago.

After 13 years of operating in Millard, Addy’s Sports Bar & Grill plans to permanently close its location at 14110 S Street on April 8th. Addy’s other locations are unaffected.

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The “Restaurant & Retail Updates” section is sponsored by Anderson Convenience Market, featuring Quality AMOCO Fuels and serving Omaha since 1952, and proud to announce the return of Quality Amoco Fuels. Look for changes this Summer at Anderson Convenience Market – 8 Omaha area locations!

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The Big Story

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New monument sign at Eppley Airfield. The airport’s $950 million terminal expansion program was one fo the big projects announced in the first quarter.
Photo credit: Omaha Airport Authority

1st Quarter Commercial Real Estate News

NAI NP Dodge produces a report on Omaha’s commercial real estate market estate market each quarter. Below are some highlights. Omaha’s office, retail and industrial markets remain impressively strong.

Office Market

The 48.6 million sq. ft. Omaha office market ended the first quarter of 2024 with a vacancy rate of 6.9 percent, which was down from last quarter. Absorption over the past 12 months was 155,000 sq. ft. Rental rates were up to $25.25. Approximately 1.3 million sq. ft. of office space is under construction at this time, about the same as last quarter.

Retail Market

Approximately 66 million sq. ft. of retail space was considered for this report. At this time, 375,000 sq. ft. of retail space is under construction, which is down slightly from last quarter. Vacancy was 4.6 percent, down slightly. Rental rates were $17.47 per square foot. The 12-month net absorption was 576,000 sq. ft. at the end of the quarter, up from the previous period.

Industrial Market

Omaha’s industrial sector continues to be strong. The total market size is 107 million sq. ft. Approximately 4.8 million sq. ft. of industrial space is currently under construction, not quite as much as the previous quarter. Industrial vacancy is 2.6 percent, which is a little higher than last quarter. Rental rates are $7.93, which is up from last quarter. The 12-month net absorption is 1.3 million sq. ft., which is down dramatically last quarter.

1st Quarter Development Announcements

NuStyle Development announced a $163 million plan to convert the Central Park Plaza twin towers downtown into a 700-unit apartment complex. Known as “The Duo,” this project would include a city-owned parking garage on the site of the old Park Fair Mall building which is now used for indoor parking.

The value of the crossroads redevelopment project has gone from $553.8 million to $861.7 million. Woodbury Corporation of Salt Lake City has joined the ownership team and will direct the development moving forward.

The Omaha Airport Authority broke ground on its $950 million expansion and renovation of the Eppley terminal Completion is planned for 2028.

Owners of the Union Omaha soccer team announced plans for a $300 million, 18-acre, mixed-use development next to Gallup’s headquarters along Abbott Drive that would include a 7,000-seat soccer stadium.

Mayor Jean Stothert said the city is not in a hurry to issue a development RFP for the empty square block at 14th & Dodge, because it may be used as a laydown yard for streetcar construction which starts this year.

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Grow Omaha Snippets

Grow Omaha Snippets Sponsored by:

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The Gretna Landing development northwest of 192nd & Highway 370 in Gretna is a busy place these days. Scooter’s Coffee is officially open for business, according to ACCESS Commercial. Walgreen’s if fully constructed with an anticipated opening date of mid-April. The future Chase Bank building is enclosed and scheduled top open late this summer.

The biggest building in the development will be Fleet Farm. Grading for that 150,000 sq. ft. superstore should start this fall with opening planned for the fall of 2025. Finally, Metonic Real Estate Solutions is grading land to build a 250-unit multifamily project.

Plans call for converting a vacant building northeast of 24th & Q Street into the South Omaha Global Market, according to WOWT. The market would include a food court with 16 businesses offering food from around the world. The $16 million project is expected to create 50 jobs and be finished in 2027.

CHI Health Center Omaha will host the first-ever championship of the Pro-Volleyball Federation May 15th and 18th, according to KETV. The event will be broadcast on CBS Sports Network. The Omaha Supernovas are part of the league, which also has teams in Atlanta, Grand Rapids, Orlando, Columbus, San Diego and Las Vegas.

Allegiant flights at Eppley Airfield will now board in Concourse A (south) instead of the Concourse B (north), according to the Omaha Airport Authority. Allegiant’s ticket counter remains unchanged in the south terminal on the ground level.

John McCoy, an economist with the Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City’s Omaha branch, spoke to the Metro Omaha Builders Association this week and shared some thoughts about the local economy and housing market.

Economic conditions in Nebraska remain strong, he said, and most households appear to be in strong financial positions. Despite increasing interest rates, home prices have remained elevated and building activity has remained strong in Nebraska. Finally, “home prices and the cost of financing may be challenging for first-time homebuyers, and relief may require more normal growth in home prices and robust growth in real incomes.”

Grow Omaha Snippets are brought to you by Omaha Car Care with four metro area locations – 131st & Dodge, 58th & Center, 85th & L and 144th & Harrison.

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Business News

Local Business News Sponsored by FranNet of The Heartland:

Carson Wealth last month added its 13th wholly owned office with a new location in Elkhorn. The three-person team manages more than $163 million in assets and includes David Carroll, Jon Springer and Jessica Fricke. Omaha-based Carson Group currently manages $34 billion in assets and serves more than 49,000 families among its advisory network of 150-plus partner offices, including more than 50 Carson Wealth locations.

Ascensus of Dresher, Penn., will acquire Mutual of Omaha’s 401(k) recordkeeping business. Ascensus and Mutual of Omaha have collaborated for more than 20 years. Through the transaction, Ascensus will assume full responsibility for the recordkeeping business, which serves more than 2,300 retirement plans and 65,000 savers, and has more than $3.9 billion in assets under administration. Financial terms of the transaction are not being disclosed.

Omaha H2O held a ribbon cutting and grand opening at 20310 Highway 50 in Springfield. The company provides custom water treatment solutions, including water softener installation, sales and service, UV light filtration and carbon filters/systems.

After climbing slightly above growth neutral for December and January, the Creighton University Mid-America Business Conditions Index, a leading economic indicator for the nine-state region stretching from Minnesota to Arkansas, slumped below the 50.0 growth neutral threshold for February and March. The March reading was 49.6, up slightly from 49.1 in February.

Thurman Chiropractic will hold a ribbon cutting tomorrow for its new location at 1231 Golden Gate Drive in Papillion.

Two Werner Enterprises truck drivers, Gina and Steve Jones, have been awarded the 2024 TA Citizen Driver Award. Presented by TravelCenters of America, the award “celebrates individuals who exemplify the highest standards of the trucking industry and contribute positively to their communities.” They were honored at the 2024 Mid-America Trucking Show on March 22 in Louisville, Ky.

Elite Auto Protection has leased a 9,550 sq. ft. space in a flex building at 10711 Chandler Road in La Vista, according to Chris Falcone of NAI NP Dodge, who represented the tenant in the lease transaction. The company provides bed liners, clear bra and tinting services.

The Greater Omaha Chamber will hold a Coffee & Contacts networking event at Kids Can Community Center, 4768 Q Street, on Tuesday, April 16th at 7:30 a.m. Registration for this members-only event is available HERE.

This section is sponsored by FranNet of The Heartland, the local, trusted franchise experts. They are “in the business of helping you get into business!”

Grow Omaha Residential

Omaha Real Estate Numbers for March

By Joe Finlay

According to a Realtor.com study, the best week to list a house for sale is April 14-20. The study was based on high buyer demand, lower competition from other sellers and fewer price reductions than the typical week of the year. The study also suggests that listing during April 14-20 could increase the sale price by 5-10 percent compared to the beginning of the year.

In Omaha, we often see prices increase between March and July. Let’s take a look at the numbers for Douglas and Sarpy counties for the month of March.

Douglas County Existing Homes

The median sale price for existing homes in Douglas County was $$276,500, representing a 4 percent increase over last March. We saw a 30 percent increase in the number of available homes in March of this year compared to last year, with 534 homes for sale.

According to FreddieMac, interest rates in March of 2023 were about half a point lower than they were in March of 2024, but prices in Douglas County continued to rise.

Douglas County New Construction
The number of new homes available in Douglas County has hovered around 400-450 for the past year and a half. The median sale price was $421,485 in March.

Sarpy County Existing Homes
The median sale price for existing homes in Sarpy County was $310,000, representing a 5 percent increase over the same time last year. The number of available homes in Sarpy County has remained somewhat steady over the past year at about 120 homes for sale.

Sarpy County New Construction
Similar to Douglas County, there are about 500 new construction homes for sale representing homes at all stages of the build process. The median sale price for new construction in Sarpy County was about $425,000 in March.

New construction remains an opportunity for buyers in both Douglas and Sarpy counties for a variety of reasons. Availability is high and prices seem reasonable.

Bottom Line
Looking ahead, there’s no reason to believe we won’t continue to have a strong spring real estate market in Omaha, especially with the best week to sell ahead of us. I expect both prices and unit sales to increase through the spring and summer. Let’s connect and talk through your selling or buying options.

Grow Omaha Residential is developed and sponsored by Joe Finlay, REALTOR with NP Dodge Real Estate.

Grow Omaha University

Leadership & Sales Insights for Ambitious People

Compiled by Grow Omaha co-founder and sales trainer Jeff Beals.

Sponsored by Dundee Bank


Want to reduce time spent in meetings? A Fortune article recommends asking several questions: 1. Can we get ruthless about cutting meetings? 2. Can we keep meetings to 15 minutes? 3. Can we be stricter with agendas? 4. Can we solve problems with leaner communication rather than meetings? 5. What executable goals can we establish instead of scheduling follow-up meetings?

Inflation fears are diminishing among leaders of Fortune 500 companies. The share of CEOs citing inflation as one of their top three concerns dropped to 27 percent from 51 percent previously. That decline came despite inflation remaining sticky.

Growing skepticism about the return on a college education is causing Gen Z to become the “tool belt generation,” the Wall Street Journal reports. The number of students enrolled in vocational schools rose 16 percent last year. The ranks of students studying construction trades rose 23 percent.

Several New England colleges will exceed $90,000 a year starting this fall, according to CNN. Yale, Tufts, Boston University and Wellesley College are among a few private institutions that will top this year’s costs for tuition, housing and other expenses.

Chicago-based McKinsey & Company is offering career coaching and nine months of pay to any employee who promises to leave, according to The Hustle. The consulting firm hopes the incentives will help it slim its head count.

If you enjoy stupid-criminal stories, here’s one with a modern-technology twist: A suspect was arrested last week in Los Angeles, according to Yahoo News, when a police chase came to an abrupt end. The car he stole, an electric Tesla, ran out of battery power in the middle of the road.


Hang out with the winners on your sales team, not the whiners, says sales author Mike Weinberg. “Seek input and friendship from successful people with positive attitudes. Avoid the negative naysayers. We become more like the people with whom we surround ourselves. Choose wisely.”

Sales Stat – Optimistic sales pros outperform pessimists by 57 percent, according to HubSpot. That’s true even when the pessimists have better selling skills.

Forty-three percent of high-performing sales managers say that their sales processes are closely monitored and strictly enforced compared to 29 percent of underperforming managers.

The BragBird online sales training program gives you an edge when competing for new business. There are 40 modules, each a different topic with a video and matching workbook. It’s only $79 per month and group discounts are available. You can cancel at any time. If you’re ambitious, click HERE now!


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Did You Know?

Surprising Facts, Figures & Points of Pride That Make Omaha Unique

This section is sponsored by Lockbox Storage.

Did you know the Atlas Apartments building at 2929 California Street used to be St. Joseph’s hospital? More recently it had been known as Creighton University Medical Center. After it was no longer a hospital, NuStyle Development turned it into 732 apartment units, the largest apartment building in Nebraska.

Did you know the University of Nebraska Medical Center is a Fulbright U.S. Scholar Program Top Producing Institution for the second year in a row, as established by the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs?

Did you know the new Ooh de Lally restaurant at 4916 Underwood Avenue in Dundee is a non-profit business designed to train former prison inmates for food service jobs? The restaurant opened last month and is in the former Mark’s Bistro space.

This section is sponsored by Lockbox Storage, an affiliate of Omaha-based McGregor Interests Inc. We provide storage solutions for all of your storage needs. Our facilities have full-time managers and bright lighting to provide superior security for your belongings. In addition to space for rent, we also provide packing supplies, protection plans and locks along with complimentary handcarts and dollies. Visit LockBox Storage and let us help you with all your storage needs.

Upcoming Events in the Metro

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Poetry & Music Concert on April 6th: Now in its 7th year, the Poetry & Music Project connects student poets and their words with composers to create original music and explore the connections between poetry and music. The statewide program, run in partnership with the Nebraska Writers Collective, seeks to amplify the voices of youth poets, both urban and rural, across Nebraska and Iowa. Happening at the Omaha Conservatory of Music, come out to support local creatives!

Yoga in the Garden on April 9th: Created to soothe the nervous system, this class is gentle on the body yet dynamic in cultivating inner peace. Led by Jen Guerrero at Lauritzen Gardens, the series will include standing and seated postures for strength & balance. No yoga experience needed – this class is perfect for beginners and welcoming to experienced yoga practitioners who seek a peaceful practice in a lovely setting. Bring whatever props (i.e., pillow, mat, cork blocks, bolster, eye-mask, blanket) that you feel are necessary in making your practice the most comfortable it can possibly be. Pre-registration is required due to limited space.

Marigold Lunch & Learn | Cybersecurity for Small Businesses w/ Ron Woerner on April 9th: Join Marigold on April 9th for their Lunch-and-Learn session, “Secure Your Success”, where they simplify cybersecurity for small businesses. Ron Woerner, a seasoned expert, will break down the essentials of cybersecurity in a language that’s easy to understand and actionable for businesses of all tech levels. Come learn how to safeguard your business against online threats. Gain insights, stay for the networking and leave empowered to protect your digital domain!

Singles Mixer (40+) on April 10th: Join Smitten Singles for a mixer designed for singles age 40+. Enjoy charcuterie while meeting other singles, drinks and additional snacks are available for purchase from Spirit World. This is a social event, designed to bring people with common interests together for curated and unique experiences. Spots are limited so get your tickets now!

ROI of Why 2024 on April 11th: Building upon the groundbreaking thought leadership of the previous Do More Good Movement conferences, ROI of Why 2024 will dive deeper into how business leaders can align their purpose and profit to improve their communities and companies. You can expect speakers with varying backgrounds leading the sessions with room for Q&A after. Happening at the Nebraska Innovation Campus in Lincoln.

Modus Free Coworking Day on April 11th: Join Modus for a FREE coworking day on the second Thursday of each month from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. High-speed wifi and office amenities are readily available. Unlimited Amateur coffee and Artemis tea are always ready to go as well!

Do you have an event you want Vesta to publicize? Share them with us here for free!

This Upcoming Events section is sponsored by Eagle Mortgage Company, is a locally owned and full-service mortgage company in Omaha.

Eagle Mortgage can help you realize your dream of owning a home.

People in the News

Sponsored by The Greater Omaha Chamber

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Tenaska CEO Chris Leitner recently announced the promotion of Tim Kudron to president of Tenaska Marketing Ventures, a Tenaska affiliate and a leading natural gas marketer. Kudron was most recently Chief Financial Officer and has been with Tenaska for 28 years. He replaces Mark Whitt, who is retiring. Current senior vice president of credit risk, Mark Soulliere, is the new CFO.

Lauritzen Gardens has chosen Ennis Anderson IV as its new CEO effective May 1st. He succeeds John Newman, who is retiring this month. Anderson is currently senior vice president of guest services at the Fort Worth Botanic Garden in Fort Worth, Tex.

First Westroads Bank has hired Brett Michael as a commercial loan officer. He has 20 years’ experience in the banking industry including the last 14 as a commercial real estate lender. Michael earned a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration degree from Creighton University and is a graduate of the Graduate School of Banking at Colorado.

Lutz, an Omaha-based business solutions firm has added Joslyn Barnes as a graphic designer and Shannon Wurtele as a client service associate.

Farm Credit Services of America elected two agricultural producers to serve on the board of directors: Cris Miller of Spearfish, S.D. and Jon Van Beek of Primghar, Iowa. Both were incumbents and will serve four-year terms. The Omaha-based association’s territory includes Nebraska, Iowa, South Dakota and Wyoming.

The Greater Omaha Chamber is a catalyst and connector, advocating for businesses small and large. Learn, share and grow with more than 12,000 professionals from 3,000 member businesses across Greater Omaha. Click HERE to see our latest events.

Wall Street: The Week in Review

Commentary by George Morgan

Morgan is the founder of Morgan Investor Education of Omaha.

Sponsored by Baird Holm Attorneys at Law

Views and opinions expressed herein are solely those of the author.

The objective of this episode of my incredibly perceptive commentary is to destroy the myth that the Fed has mystical powers over interest rates, and therefore, can immediately eradicate the inflationary scourge created by our spending-intoxicated Congress.

Which begs the question, If the Fed is so omnipotent, why didn’t they stop the inflation contagion from spreading in the first place?

In 1958, Congress anointed the Fed with the uniformed and politically motivated mandate that they were responsible for keeping the U.S. economy operating at full employment, with stable prices. Never mind that they forgot to define full employment and price stability, but vague generalities are close enough for government work. Then, to add insult to injury, they forget to ask if this is even a possibility.

For several months now, the Fed has been signaling that they are reversing course and are implementing policies designed to bring interest rates down. Mr. Market, or his cousin, Mr. Bond market, says NOT! A recent headline in the Wall Street Journal read “Rising Bonds Yields Surprises Wall Street.” Why is Wall Street surprised? They are the ones who gave the Fed the single-digit salute and raised the bond yields.

The only interest rate that the Fed fully controls is the Fed Funds rate. This is the rate the Fed charges commercial banks to borrow from them. The amount of money that The Fed has currently on loan to the commercial bank system is in the neighborhood of $300 billion. The total bond market is an excess of $60 trillion. So, you’re trying to tell me that by raising the interest rates on 1/100 of a percent of the total bond market, you can control the other 99.99 percent? To quote one of my favorite country Western songs, “I have some ocean front property in Arizona. If you’ll buy that, I’ll throw in the Golden Gate in free.”

The current increase in bond yields is coming from the tens of thousands of bond traders that every day trade bonds for financial institutions and mutual funds in order to assure that their cash balances are not sitting idle, but actually doing something productive. On an average day, the total dollar amount of bonds traded is four or five times larger than that of the stock market.

Interest rates trickle (sometimes at tsunamic rates) down to the stock market. But, just like most other data points, Mr. Market’s response to interest rate movements are often random and unpredictable.

I am currently Beta testing a theory that investment returns go up when I spend less time listening to Cramer and his lackeys analyze every jot or tittle that emerges from the Fed, and spend more time playing pickleball. I will keep you apprised of my research results.

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Have You Watched Grow O on Video Yet?

Jeff Beals, Trenton Magid and a guest in the KFAB 1110 Radio Booth

The Grow Omaha radio show broadcasts live every Saturday morning at 9:00, but now you can watch videos of each episode instead of just listening.

Grow Omaha’s brand-new website features video footage shot inside the radio studio during each week’s show!

Videos include News of the Week, Lightning Round, guest interviews, and “Grow Omaha Uncut,” a behind-the-scenes look at what happens during commercial breaks.

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