They’re not making anymore land but a growing city needs more places to park cars, trucks, and eventual build on.
An empty fenced lot is critical for businesses retail like uses like lumber, service like uses like bus companies, satellite storage lots for nearby car dealers, storage for people RVs, Tree Trimming businesses and many many other uses that have a hard time locating in a Shared Industrial Building.
While the “land banking” concept explored in Special purpose buildings also holds true here, sometimes a vacant lot might be close to the “highest and best use” … perhaps with a small building on it for a used car dealer, rental car lot, to write up paperwork or to house a dispatcher and book keepers for a tree company.
I’ve seen these lots making very good money for entrepreneurial owners who filled them with cargo containers rented to very small businesses as semi-industrial space alternative, although cities have cracked down on that sort of open storage when over used, and to some extent the growing efficiency of Mini-Storage can cap the rental to small tenant business.
Like the multi tenant industrial buildings, most companies need to pay workers as soon as they get to the trucks. Think how many tree trimming companies need large chippers and crews to man them … those don’t fit easily in multi story garages either.
If you can find a lot that pays even a few percent interest in a growing urban area, it will beat a savings account by a long-shot even if never built on.