February 1st, 2003
Bill Melville, Columbus CEO
Everything New Looks Old Again In Central Ohio’s Hottest Office Market
The New Downtown
The Arena District is Central Ohio’s hottest office market. At Nationwide Realty Investors, they’re smiling all the way to the bank.
The glitz and gloss of the Arena District are impressive anytime, but never more than on a winter evening when the Blue Jackets are playing at home. There’s Nationwide Arena itself, of course, brightly lit and bustling. There’s the adjoining, glass-walled CoreComm Ice Haus, often full of skaters showing off their moves. And within a stone’s throw of the arena, post-game strollers are drawn to the noise and neon of new restaurants and drinking establishments.
The bright-lights, big-city atmosphere isn’t necessarily the best measure of the Arena District’s success, though. To find the real bottom line, you need to hop on an elevator and take a look at what lies above the restaurants, bars and shops.
Those upper floors have made the $500 million Arena District the hottest and most expensive office market in Central Ohio. Even as office buildings in the Downtown core and some suburban areas cut rental rates and offer incentives to lure tenants, the Arena District’s office buildings are nearly full. Brian Ellis, president of Nationwide Realty Investors, the Arena District developer, says office space in the district commands the region’s top lease rates-and nobody’s cutting prices.