Office take up latest 23rd October 2015

Whilst UK office take-up levels in Q3 have been more restrained than earlier in the year, 2015 has seen the highest Q1-3 city centre and out-of-town take up (6.9m sq ft) since the downturn, according to Bilfinger GVA's latest Big Nine report.

The quarterly report, which studies regional office occupier markets indicated that Manchester has seen impressive take-up in the city centre, driven by pre-let activity, equating to almost 50% above the five-year average.

Newcastle and Liverpool also saw strong activity, with take-up at twice the quarterly average in the former and 48% above average in the latter. The largest deal of the quarter was the 60,200 sq ft pre-let to NCC Group at XYZ building in Manchester.

Looking south, Q3 results for Birmingham have been subdued however the city looks set for a record result thanks to the significant deals under offer, pushing end of year figures to over 900,000 sq ft.

Continuing in the same vein as Q2, where take-up in the nine cities’ out-of-town markets exceeded 1m sq ft for the first time since the downturn, the report highlights how these areas are still performing well and currently achieving 12% above the five year average.

In Q3, take-up totalled 859,900 sq ft in the out-of-town markets, with Manchester and Newcastle performing especially well and taking all the spots in the top five out-of-town deals table. Accenture comes in at first position, occupying 57,100 sq ft in Newcastle’s Cobalt Business Park, with Syngenta following in second place, taking 32,330 sq ft in Crescent House, Didsbury, Manchester.

Carl Potter, Senior Director and National Head of Offices at Bilfinger GVA comments: “The lack of speculative development, and hence Grade A stock, is beginning to lead to pre-let activity across a number of city centres. Whilst higher take-up levels have been previously more noticeable in the larger UK Core Cities, there is now evidence that the smaller Core Cities such as Newcastle and Liverpool are also benefitting from increased activity. ”