By Stephen L. Burger, CPM, CRX, CRM
To those of us of a certain age, the report we
ran this morning on the impact of
driverless cars on commercial real estate still sounds a bit like science
fiction. But it should really come as no surprise that technology has advanced
to this point, where we can foresee the reshaping of our city streets, our
malls and shopping centers and even our grocery deliveries around this
Major car manufacturers, including BMW and Mercedes--and
major corporations that are not known primarily as car manufacturers, such as
Google--are getting into the mix with an eye toward getting a workable
market-ready driverless vehicle to market. As we report in the story, the
Google versions have already traveled more than a million miles on city streets
with only one minor accident on their record.
Of course, this blog is not about the latest advances in
technology. It is about service. The article we posted this morning tells of
deliveries made to our homes within the hour of placing the order, it tells of
distribution centers planted not way outside the city limits in industrial
parks but closer in to accommodate the last-mile concept of rapid delivery.
And it tells of multifamily apartments “already struggling to
manage the flow of packages as residents do more of their shopping online.
Properties are running out of lobby space to hold packages and lack the staff
to deliver packages to residents. Multifamily properties could soon install
loading docks compatible with the autonomous delivery vehicles. The final step
could be a direct connection of the vehicles with each unit.”
Adaptation is the name of the game here. In a way, the more
things change, the more we as property managers have to adapt to maintain a
consistent level of service. The smart service organizations--for that is the
industry of the property manager--see all of the changes taking place around us
in the light of providing better service for our occupants. Whether the
discussion revolves around drones, PDAs or delivery by driverless cars.
And it was always thus. From cellphones and laptops to the
possibility of direct-to-customer deliveries, the property managers who can
adapt and recognize such advancements as tools to better serve our clients will
not only be ahead of technology but will also be ahead of the competition.
Those who refuse to adapt run a huge risk of being left by
the side of the road.
Steve Burger, President
EUGENE BURGER MANAGEMENT CORPORATION
As president and COO
of Eugene Burger Management Co., Steve
Burger is directly responsible for the overall quality, depth and
consistency of management services provided in all 15 regions in the EBMC