NAIOP South Florida Hosts Annual Economic Development Panel

Participants discussed current real estate trends, high-profile projects and anticipated challenges

NAIOP South Florida, a Commercial Real Estate Development Organization, recently hosted its annual NAIOP South Florida Economic Development Panel at the Tower Club in Fort Lauderdale. Attendees included industry leaders in commercial real estate and economic development professionals offering expertise on the recent transformation of South Florida becoming one of the country’s most desirable destinations for businesses.

The forum was moderated by Darcie Lunsford, Executive Vice President of Butters Realty & Management. Topics included a recap of South Florida’s recovery in the wake of the pandemic and various development projects scheduled for the tri-county region. The group also discussed how the increased influx of businesses and residents to South Florida creates new economic opportunities, and how the area can overcome the lack of affordable housing, schooling, talent recruitment issues, shortages of quality office space and gaps in transportation.

Panelists included Miami-Dade Beacon Council Executive Vice President James Kohnstamm, Business Development Board of Palm Beach County President and CEO Kelly Smallridge, Greater Fort Lauderdale Alliance President and CEO Bob Swindell and Downtown Development Authority President and CEO Jenni Morejon.

“The recurrent theme that came out of this year’s well-attended economic development panel was that South Florida is a top destination in the U.S. to live and do business, offering companies looking to relocate here a pro-business environment and an attractive quality-of-life,” Jules Morgan says, NAIOP South Florida Executive Director Jules Morgan. “While signs show that the economy is slowing, the commercial real estate industry continues to thrive as demand continues to surge. It’s a great time to be part of this regional industry and events like these allow key professionals to build meaningful business connections that ultimately make an impact on our entire region.”

NAIOP South Florida features more than 350 members representing constituents in Miami-Dade, Broward, Palm Beach, Martin and St. Lucie counties. The chapter is the leading commercial real estate development organization in the region. For more information, visit

SFBW Staff
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