The orange and green signs of the Carlton Smith Co. can be seen all over town. For years they have been fixtures on commercial buildings and open commercial lots.
From its formation in 1989, the Carlton Smith Company has completed more than $175 million in commercial sales and leasing. Owner Carlton Smith is currently expanding on that success with new offices and new staff.
The expansion is attributed to a belief in the expansion of Juneau’s retail market. “I’ve been tracking the real estate market in Juneau since late ‘70s,” Smith said, in a phone interview.
Excluding a drop in oil prices in the 1980s, growth in the Juneau real estate market has remained incremental, Smith said. “Steadily, without much fanfare, the Juneau retail sector is expanding,”
Smith said in a recent press release that “Major retailers like Costco, Walmart, Home Depot, Petco, Alaska Industrial Hardware, and Office Max have opened stores, and several years ago Fred Meyers — one of the first major national retailers to open a store in Juneau — completed a major expansion. These are organizations that conduct serious due diligence studies of demographics. By choosing Juneau, they are expressing well-reasoned optimism that the community will continue to grow as a regional retail center.”
Smith said he mirrors this optimism and that Juneau’s sturdy market hints at growth in the future “since we don’t have the large spikes that we find in other places. “However, Juneau’s market needs land for development, Smith said. “It makes investment a strategic exercise,” he said. “Juneau’s real estate market has to be affordable for both residents and commerce.”
To keep pace with Juneau’s steady growth, Smith added two associates to his business, Ryan Williams and Toma Alario.
Williams specializes in the multifamily and retail sectors. Williams is back in Alaska after leaving to graduate from of the University of Southern California and launched his real estate career at Marcus and Millichap in 2005.
As vice president of operations, Alario focuses on mortgage banking and institutional real estate marketing. She draws on her experience as manager of station operations for Alaska Airlines in Juneau.
Carlton Smith Co. has accrued a number of successful projects. The firm facilitated the sale of nearly 100,000 square feet of real estate on Willoughby Ave. “The largest sale in modern history of Juneau office space,” according to the firm’s release. Other deals include the site selection and purchase for Home Depot and sale of the parcels needed for expansions of Harri Plumbing and Glacier Seafoods.
For his new office, Smith renovated a downtown corner office space in the Goldstein Building, which includes a large format print of historic downtown Juneau.
Smith moved his brokerage to Juneau from Anchorage in 1998. Smith said he believes his business has a positive impact on the region. “In my experience, owning and operating a small business successfully and profitably in southeast Alaska is a challenge,” Smith said. “We are proud to be a member of the business community and proud to make payroll. We network with some of the best-qualified service providers in the business — appraisers, land use planners [and] attorneys, people who work exclusively in the business.”
For more information about Carlton Smith Company visit in person at 110 Seward Street, Suite One, online at www.thecarltonsmithcompany.com or call 463-4800.
• Contact reporter Russell Stigall at 523-2276 or at firstname.lastname@example.org.