City Centre office take-up for Q4 2016 reached 621,016 sq ft across 83 transactions, a 68.2% increase on the same quarter in 2015. This was in line with expectations with take up during the same period in 2014/15 down by just 2.1% & 0.65% respectively. The total take-up for 2016 was 1,306,599 sq ft which is considerably higher than the five and ten year averages.
A number of sizeable transactions occurred in Q4 including, 165,000 sq ft to Swinton Insurance at 101 The Embankment, 63,661 to MMU at 6 Great Marlborough Street, 45,456 sq ft to Co-op Digital at NOMA’s Federation House, 25,070 sq ft to Fanatics at Stubbs Mill and a further 39,155 sq ft of pre-lets completed across 4 deals at Allied London’s No.1 Spinningfields. Large deals (above 15,000 sq ft) accounted for 10% of transactions in Q4 which again is consistent with previously quarters and therefore reflecting that the churn is still apparent.
In the out of town markets, take-up in South Manchester reached 221,111 sq ft in Q4, bringing the 2016 total to 546,701 sq ft, which is in line with the 10 year average. In Salford Quays the total take-up for 2016 was lower than the previous year at 314,923 sq ft, but demand remains strong for grade A schemes such as Exchange Quay and the Tomorrow Building. Warrington saw a 9.6% increase on the previous year’s take up, with a total of 370,168 sq ft transacted, 37% of which was within Birchwood Business Park.