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New one million milestone for Birmingham office lettings

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More than 1,000,000 sq ft of Grade A office space was let in Birmingham in the past year, a new record for the city.

According to the Birmingham Office Market Forum (BOMF) 644,896 sq ft of office lettings were transacted in the first half of 2015. Add this to the 713,760 sq ft let in H2 of 2014 and the total, 1,142,262 sq ft, is the highest since BOMF began recording the data in 2007.

Will Ventham, a director in the office agency and occupier services team at CBRE, believes this is an all-time high for the city.

He said: “Although we don’t have regulated data to prove it, the consensus among the city’s office agents is that this is a record.

“The previous high recorded over a 12 month period by BOMF was 995,578 sq ft, between June 2007 – June 2008. There was talk at the time that this was the peak, but in the last year the city has smashed that by some margin.”

The take-up figures have been boosted by some major inward investment deals. HS2 formally acquired 97,958 sq ft at Two Snowill at the back end of 2014, whilst HSBC’s acquisition of 212,000 sq ft at Arena Central was the biggest inward investment deal in a generation.

According to Mr Ventham, the first half of 2015 has seen other encouraging trends emerging, suggesting there will be no let up in the lettings market anytime soon.

He said: “In addition to the welcome return of the inward investor, at Eastside Locks, BCU’s acquisition of 46,000 sq ft is the first pre-completion take-up we have seen in a while.

“Churn among the city’s traditional indigenous occupiers is healthy, with Nurton’s letting of 19,284 sq ft at Two Colmore Square to engineering firm Jacobs being of particular note, as it was partly driven by HS2’s decision to move to the city. We will undoubtedly see more of this.

"A number of the city’s major indigenous occupiers also have lease events looming and are on the look out for new premises, so the churn will continue.

“It’s true that we are down to the last 325,000 sq ft of oven-ready Grade A space. However, I can’t remember a time when we had a more exciting pipeline.

“Paradise, Arena, Three Snowhill, 103 Colmore Row, 55 Colmore Row, 2 Cornwall Street and Temple Court between them are potentially adding more than 1,000,000 sq ft to the market in the short to medium term. There is a strong prospect that lettings will be secured on some of these schemes before shovels have even been placed in the ground.”



Posted by Dawn Roberts on 27 July 2015

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