Gordy Stofer, vice president, office development, United Properties
Gordy Stofer is focusing on projects in the North Loop among other areas as the new vice president of office development at United Properties.
Younger workers are influencing where employers locate and the types of offices they offer, which is helping to drive interest in the North Loop, Stofer said.
“It opens opportunities for different types of products in some of the neighborhoods that United’s been involved in,” Stofer said. “The North Loop in particular is one that’s going to continue to see continued growth.”
The market for downtown office space with access to transit and other amenities is hot both in Minneapolis and in Denver, where Stofer previously oversaw complex development projects as a director with Hines Interests Limited Partnership.
Stofer has more than 15 years of real estate and development experience as he takes on office investment and development activities at United Properties.
A Minnesota native, Stofer traces his interest in commercial real estate development and United Properties to his uncle, the late Boyd Stofer. The elder Stofer led Pohlad family real estate companies, including United Properties, before his death in 2011.
“He was my biggest mentor in the real estate business and with my dad in life, really,” Stofer said.
Stofer has a degree from Miami University in Ohio, a master’s degree in real estate and construction management from the University of Denver and an MBA from Northwestern University.
Q: What kinds of offices and amenities appeal to younger workers?
A: The younger demographic doesn’t expect to have big areas of private space. They’re fine being on the computer, plugged in. The workforce environment is becoming more dense, more open, more densely populated. You’re seeing higher ceiling heights to allow more natural light deeper into the core of the building. Outdoor spaces are becoming increasingly popular.
Q: How does the office market in Minneapolis compare to that of Denver?
A: Denver is one of the hottest markets in the country. But the markets are very similar. You see a lot of traditional suburban office users that are now moving into downtown in both cities. Denver is more of a dynamic market, bigger ups and bigger downs. It doesn’t have the Fortune 500 backbone to the economy that Minneapolis has.
Q: What’s something you learned from your uncle about development?
A: Development is a long-term game. You have to have a patient approach and ability to weather the storm. Cycles happen; it’s part of the business.