Chris Cheap

Core cities show bounce in office demand

Manchester was home to two of the five top city deals outside London in Q1 2014, according to the latest quarterly regional office market report by GVA.

GVA's Big Nine report shows that total city centre office take-up in the first quarter of 2014 performed strongly, at 7% above the five-year average.

Manchester recorded 250,000 sq ft of take-up in the first three months of the year. Edinburgh and Glasgow were more than 50% up on the five-year quarterly average. Leeds and Bristol both outperformed the quarterly average, each with new deals tallies in excess of 100,000 sq ft.

Liverpool's Q1 take-up was 50,000, sq ft, down 36% from a five-year average of 79,214 sq ft. Cardiff and Birmingham were also below average.

The top five city centre deals in Q1 in the nine cities monitored were:

  • Barclays's 80,000 sq ft at Carlyle's 4 Piccadilly Place in Manchester
  • Rockstar Games taking over the 75,500 sq ft Scotsman newspaper office in Edinburgh
  • Trader Media Group's 60,000 sq ft deal at Ask's No1 First Street in Manchester
  • Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority's deal to take up 30,000 sq ft at Alexander Bain House in Glasgow
  • The fifth deal was the 28,300 sq ft letting to Teleperformance at Baltic Place in Newcastle

The nine cities followed are Birmingham, Bristol, Cardiff, Edinburgh, Glasgow, Leeds, Liverpool, Manchester and Newcastle.

Chris Cheap, head of North West offices, commented: "Manchester has yet again shown a healthy level of take up, which bodes well for the year ahead. The most exciting aspect of the first quarter however is the level of inward investment we are seeing from occupiers who see Manchester as the right destination for their business. With Trader Media moving into the city and impending commitments from Ford Credit Europe, 60,000 sq ft, and Towergate Insurance, 50,000 sq ft, it is clear that the city has the right ingredients for footloose occupiers.

"It is hoped that the supply pipeline can keep pace with this as existing stock is absorbed. The soon to be completed One St Peters Square will inject a much needed 200,000 sq ft and will ensure that Manchester continues to be open for business for those occupiers seeking prime space in the city."

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