Real estate investors looking to succeed, with the continued changes to the paradigm of office space needs, who take a creative approach to the redevelopment of older office buildings have a great opportunity for success.

This article from Hotel Resource News shows one way older office buildings are being redeveloped, Hotel Development Trend – Office Buildings Convert to New Hotels

An emerging trend that architects are seeing taking shape in hotel development is the conversion of older office buildings into hotels. Office space locations and needs are rapidly changing as trends in the traditional office environment are evolving.

Companies in suburban areas want to be in “live, work, play” locations causing an increase in office buildings sitting vacant that don’t offer “urban-type” amenities, such as walkability, public transit, more housing options, retail and restaurants. Large office buildings and huge surface parking lots are less appealing to companies. Hotel developers are seeing these buildings as prime locations for hotel properties. Many of these outdated office buildings need modern improvements and through that process are being converted to other uses.

The article then goes on to quote an architect Stephen Overcash of Overcash Demmitt Architects. Stephen specializes in old office building conversions and laid out some very interesting thoughts on the benefits of converting older mid-rise office buildings into a new use.

“It is more efficient to convert an office building to a hotel versus building new. It’s more environmentally friendly and saves months of tedious site approvals and permitting”.

Another advantage of converting an office building is that hotels require less parking than offices. The large parking lots necessary for the office user is prime real estate for an additional hotel or restaurant.

The quote about the parking is something which really stood out. As I drive around the Philadelphia area especially in Chester County and Delaware County, I often notice the extreme amounts of parking part of the older office buildings and even office parks. Looking at these properties for new uses, seems like a tremendous investment play.