REITs are a major force in region's economy

Part of the Assembly Row development in Somerville owned by a Real Estate Investment Trust.

Part of the Assembly Row development in Somerville owned by a Real Estate Investment Trust.

This from The New England Council (

The New England Council, the nation’s oldest regional business organization, has released a new report, ‘The Economic Impact of REITs in New England’. The report, developed with economic data and content compiled by Nareit, details the various ways that Real Estate Investment Trusts (REITs) are contributing to the New England economy, ranging from employment, to assets, to community revitalization.

REITs (Real Estate Investment Trust) own, operate or finance income-producing real estate. Modeled after mutual funds, REITs provide all investors the chance to own an interest in valuable real estate, present the opportunity to access dividend-based income and total returns, and help communities grow, thrive and revitalize.

Across the six New England states, REIT-owned properties include everything from commercial properties like office buildings, shopping centers, hotels, data centers, and recreational and entertainment facilities; residential properties such as apartment complexes and rental homes; as well as consumer and commercial storage facilities, over 3,000 telecom towers and nearly one million acres of timberland. In total, there are over 13,000 REIT-owned properties in New England, which represent $94 billion in gross assets, and support over 100,000 jobs.

‘From apartment complexes to office buildings, telecom towers to data storage facilities, REITs are all around us in New England,’ said James T. Brett, president and CEO of The New England Council. ‘As this report details, these businesses are having a tremendous impact on our region’s economy, ranging from community revitalization to supporting tens of thousands of jobs thought the six New England states. We hope that this report will provide stakeholders and policy makers with a better understanding of the role these companies play in our region’s economic well being.’

‘By investing in our communications infrastructure, American Tower is pleased to help bring connectivity to New Englanders which is now essential to all aspects of our work, education, health care and play,’ said Jim Taiclet, Chairman, president and CEO of American Tower Corp.

‘We are proud to call Boston home and to support the New England economy with 20 facilities and more than 800 employees across the six New England states, including our global headquarters,’ said William L. Meaney, president and CEO, Iron Mountain Inc.

The report draws upon data from Nareit’s December 2017 study ‘Economic contribution of REITs in the United States…’. The New England Council report supplements the data for the six New England states with profiles of some of the REITs operating in the region, including New England Council members American Tower Corporation and Iron Mountain—both headquartered in Boston — as well as Boston Properties’ 888 Boylston St. in Boston; Federal Realty’s Assembly Row in Somerville, Mass.; Weyerhaeuser’s timberlands in Maine; Ventas Inc.’s South Street Landing in Providence, and EPR Properties’ various recreational properties throughout New England.