Quarterly occupier figures indicate that throughout the first quarter of 2017, office take-up was 104,936 sq ft, compared with the 109,682 sq ft reached in the final quarter (Q4) of 2016.
Buttressed by the completion of two significant office requirements, 22 deals for office space in Leeds city centre were completed between January and March of 2017. The largest of these deals was a letting to Willis Towers Watson for 25,968 sq ft at 5 Wellington Place.
BW Legal made the only other deal for over 20,000 sq ft over the period with its acquisition of 1 Apex View.
Jeff Pearey, Lead Director - Yorkshire and North East Region, JLL said: “We saw a positive start to the year as a number of long running office requirements came to fruition. Leeds as a city has shown itself to be in good shape and is currently enjoying a relative position of strength as occupiers adapt to the uncertainty around Britain’s future relationship with the EU.
“Given the focus on high-quality city centre buildings, we are seeing a trend for businesses to ‘trade-up’ their space to even better quality or for more characterful offices. As a result, we expect new prime city centre rates to move on from £27.50 per sq ft as the year progresses due to Grade A new build schemes approaching practical completion, coupled with unsatisfied occupier demand.”
In the out-of-town market for offices to rent in Leeds, the number of completed deals was similar to the figure recorded in the previous quarter. Take-up reached 55,734 sq ft in 20 transactions compared to the 28,942 sq ft taken up over 21 deals in the fourth quarter of 2016.
In addition, one of the longest running office requirements in the Leeds out-of-town market was completed, with 10,200 sq ft let to Bellway Homes at 2150 Century Way, Thorpe Park. Finally, a freehold acquisition of 9,500 sq ft was completed by Clayton Holmes Naisbitt of 1 John Charles Way.