Strong first half for Warrington office deals

Simon RoddamMomentum in the Warrington office market has continued with 173,700 sq ft of transactions reported in the first six months of 2014.

The most notable deals of 2014 so far have been the 30,000 sq ft letting of Appleton House in Birchwood to America footwear brand New Balance, and the 54,000 sq ft lease assignment at 3300 Daresbury Park to Ombudsman Services.

According to the latest figures from the Manchester Office Agents Forum, leasehold transactions accounted for 80% of the overall take up for the half year. A noteworthy level of owner occupier demand has also transacted, with eight deals recorded in total.

The Warrington market's total take up in 2013 was 396,163 sq ft, up 29% on the previous year, with a move away from the high number of distressed freehold deals which characterised 2012.

A number of requirements in the Warrington office market are yet to be met, including 60,000 sq ft for an Areva, Atkins and Mace joint venture, 60,000 sq ft for Hewlett Packard and 50,000 sq ft for O2.

Simon Roddam, head of agency at Warrington property consultancy BE Group, and spokesman for Manchester Office Agents Forum, said: "The Warrington and environs office market has made a steady recovery since the economic slump of 2010. 2013 was an exceptional year and the first half of 2014 has showed continued momentum with take up figures showing a 34% increase on the previous year at the same point.

"Warrington's geographical location at the heart of the regional motorway network, coupled with its quality commercial property offer, continues to attract businesses. We anticipate take up to continue to pick up towards the end of 2014, with a number large occupier movements still due to drop before the end of the year."

MOAF members include BE Group, CBRE, Canning O'Neill, Colliers International, Cushman & Wakefield, DTZ, Edwards & Co, GVA, JLL, Knight Frank, Lambert Smith Hampton, Matthews & Goodman, OBI Property, Savills, TSG Property Consultants, and WHR.

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