“In recent years, we have been quite actively involved to help number of investors in the preparation of feasibility studies, market analytics, etc. We continue our research studies to help companies and investors in market analytics and make our contribution in urban development”.
GALT & TAGGART has been operating in the market for years and helps all entities working in the urban field to do marketing analysis and make the right decision.
In an interview with The FINANCIAL, Kakha Samkurashvili, Senior Analyst at GALT & TAGGART talked about the company’s contribution and future plans for urban development.
Q: Urban development has become one of the priority tasks nowadays. What does
“GALT & TAGGART” do in this regard?
A: “Galt & Taggart has been working in the field of urban development for many years and the most important thing we do is to provide the market with the analytics and all the important information they need to make informed decisions.
Today in the field of real estate development and in the context of urban development it is very important for the investor to have the right and up-to-date information to make the right decisions. This is how we see our mission to help us market the market and always provide the latest information to those who are interested. For example, we publish new research on a quarterly or annual basis, which contains the latest information. We also work in the field of private orders and for investors who want any direction of real estate development in Tbilisi, be it residential, office or shopping center, we offer tailored research, which allows you to make the right and informed decisions.”
Q: What are the specific projects the “GALT & TAGGART” is involved in urban development direction?
A: “In recent years, we have been quite active in this area and have helped several investors, for example in the preparation of feasibility studies, for example in the preparation of market analytics. These were multifunctional projects that included both residential and office and commercial real estate and our role was limited to this component which meant providing information to the investor.”
Q: What specific elements of the urban agenda are particularly important for Tbilisi and why?
A: “Tbilisi has been developing in this direction in recent years. It can be said that we are living in a very interesting era in terms of urban development, because the attitude of both investors and consumers has changed dramatically in recent years. Let’s talk about the different subtypes of real estate one by one so that we can better understand and formulate it in one context. Let’s start with residential real estate. Conditionally if 10 years ago customers did not have preferences in terms of parking, some different infrastructure requirements, today consumers already want that in the project where they buy housing, they should have both parking and different types of infrastructure to do everything in one project.
Developers have also become more frequent in recent years, when instead of 1 or 2 buildings, we are dealing with more neighborhood-type development, when they offer customers not only housing, but also the complete infrastructure that is needed for a person.
In this context, I would like to single out the approval of the Tbilisi General Plan, which was approved a few years ago, and it will absolutely change the development of the market in the coming period. This primarily involves the relocation of developers from the central districts to the suburbs, and this will continue in the following periods as well.
Today we see that there is less and less construction in the central districts of the city and more construction begins in the suburbs. As for commercial real estate, if 10 years ago, for example, most of the city population traded in open markets and street retailers, today we have a completely different situation. People prefer to go shopping in modern format shopping malls, which means not only buying things but also having fun.
If we look at the malls in Tbilisi today, we will see that they allow us to shop, have fun and get different types of services at the same time.”
Q: What activities can you name as an example of supporting urban development in Georgia?
A: “While talking about supporting urban development, I will highlight the general plan and the transport system. In recent years, one of the most important things that has started in Tbilisi has been the regulation of the transport system, which means the renewal of both roads and public transport. In recent years, it is already ecologically noticeable indeed, the number of cars is growing at a very high percentage every year, while the population of the city is not growing so much. Consequently, we see that there are more cars per capita in the city and it is becoming more and more inconvenient to drive your own car, therefore it is on the agenda to have regular public transport and roads. If we observe, a bus lane is added to some new street in the city every day, which is the most important component for urban development. Over time, as has happened in the big cities of all developed countries, it will be inconvenient to drive our own car. For this it is necessary that this transport infrastructure, both roads and lines, be it the subway or the bus be properly distributed between the suburbs or the central parts of the city, because as I mentioned in the general plan more projects will start in the suburbs in the coming years. It is therefore essential that there be adequate public transport links between the suburbs or central districts of the city, where there are typically major office spaces. These trends will intensify in the coming years as the rate of economic growth grows and develops further.”
Q: What are the main challenges of urban construction?
A: “In terms of urban development in general, not only do the regulations change the development of the city, but also the supply side, i.e., the investors because they saw certain changes in the preferences of the consumers.
As I mentioned, if earlier consumers preferred street retail 10 years ago, today people prefer to have a single shopping space in all the different options be it shopping, fun or so on. It can also be said about the residential real estate component, i.e., people need not only housing, but also complete infrastructure to decide to buy an apartment in this or that project.”
Q: What is your opinion on foreign investments in urban development in Tbilisi?
A: “Foreign investment is very important not only for urban development but also for the country’s economy in general. We have seen this many times in recent years when the main driving force of economic growth was precisely foreign investment. In real estate, especially commercial real estate, we are actively observing that there is a lot of investment in this area, and we have high hopes that foreign direct investment in both residential and commercial real estate will continue in the future.”
Q: What are “GALT & TAGGART” priority issues and future plans for Tbilisi’s urban development?
A: “Galt & Taggart, as in the last few years, will continue to provide the market with the information and analytics it needs to make informed decisions. We see our mission and role in this direction to provide people who want to invest with proper and high-level analytics to make the right decisions.”