Originally Posted by Avian001
Just curious. Does anyone know or can speculate on what effects the sale of Wachovia to Citigroup will have on Charlotte?
At this point it has hard to say, because so much of the deal will take a while to work out. The Wachovia tower will be completed. The office space was completely sold/reserved by June, with Wachovia having 50 percent of the space, followed by Duke Energy, Wake Forest, and various other businesses making up the other half. The arts projects (2 museums, theater, and cultural center) will be completed because Wachovia and any buyer have legal obligations to the city. However, it is very likely that the condo tower portion of the project is canceled. Also, pretty much no building that is not already under construction can be expected break ground in the near future, save maybe a hotel.
Job-wise, best case scenario is that the city will break even in the number of jobs moved out of the city versus the retail banking that Citi will move to the city. Worst case is net loss of about 3,000 Wachovia jobs, plus about 1,500 related jobs. One good thing is that Charlotte has had very low office vacancy rates uptown around 2%. A worst case scenario with Citi moving most of the operations out of Charlotte would bump office vacancy rates to around 10% which would cause a drop in office rental costs. This could help bring other businesses to center city. City leaders are lobbying hard for Citi to keep/move a lot of operations in Charlotte due to the much lower operational costs, lower office space costs, class A space available, and also lower cost of living, and regional growth opportunities.