Fort Lauderdale Retail Market Report
Strong Consumer Base to Bolster Retail Recovery;
Upside Potential Sustains Investor Interest
Signs of recovery form, though challenges remain. A cautious senior population and long period of occupancy restrictions designed to curb the spread of the coronavirus weighed heavily on Fort Lauderdale’s retail sector last year, leading to permanent closures and interrupting leasing activity. The distribution of the vaccine has helped release pent-up consumer demand, bringing life back to restaurants, entertainment venues and shops, though a long road to full recovery still lies ahead. The impact on tourism has been especially challenging as many jobs and retailers rely on spending by visitors, though signs of a rebound are starting to form as more people become comfortable with travel. Nonetheless, while leasing activity has gradually picked up, it will likely take a several quarters to backfill the vacant space left behind by struggling retailers.