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The Welsh Wire: Bradley Hartwell, Northtown Real Estate

Grand Rapids’ booming economy has led to a shortage of industrial and office space and a surge in new construction, according to Bradley Hartwell, owner of Northtown Real Estate in Grand Rapids — a recent guest on The Welsh Wire podcast. “It’s tough to find existing industrial space that’s of any quality,” Bradley tells interviewer Sheri Welsh. “So it’s interesting because it’s often less cost effective to build new construction, but we’re seeing more and more of it. In the downtown there’s a lot of (office) square footage that is either under construction or it’s being sort of redeveloped and re-purposed. It’s pretty exciting to see new tenants coming to downtown Grand Rapids.”

Bradley says that your office environment can play a key role in talent acquisition and retention, and help attract workers from regions that offer higher wages and benefits. “If you have a really cool office space and a really cool office environment I think you will tend to attract innovative, different-thinking, talented people,” he says. “There’s all these different qualitative factors instead of quantitative factors where you’ll leave your office and walk a couple blocks to go get lunch at some local restaurant and you’ll bump into two people end up doing deals with those people down the road. Typically the innovative, design-type thinkers prefer being in the downtown just because there’s cool stuff going. You can walk to things, you can go to a concert after work. People want to be around other people and the vibrancy and walk-ability of a downtown community or at least a closer-knit community.”

Listen to Sheri’s entire interview with Bradley Hartwell.

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