New space for Leeds occupiers

A recent report by Colliers International on the Leeds office market over the last 6 months, reinforced research by Metropolis, showing rising office take-up driven by occupier pre-lets and expansions and a healthy pipeline of new office space on its way in the city centre.

After a solid first quarter with office take up of 150,000 sq ft mainly in small deals, came the announcement of Addleshaw Goddard, the law firm, signing a pre-let on 4,645 sq m (50,000 sq ft) of offices at Bruntwood and Kier’s 3 Sovereign Square.

Leeds office take up of 549,000 sq ft during 2014, was down on the 2013 total, but 10% above the 5 year average. Large recent deals include: KPMG taking 60,000 sq ft at Sovereign Street, a pre-let of 32,382 sq ft to Squire Patton Boggs at 6 Wellington Place; DAC Beachcroft taking 23,000 sq ft at Boultbee Brooks’ refurbishment of St Paul’s House; FDM goup taking 17,000 sq ft at Whitehall Riverside.

Professional Services (notably law firms) and healthcare occupiers were the most active in 2014, but the year also saw deals to Green Flag, BSkyB and TPP. There are about 400,000 sq ft of office requirements circulating in Leeds at the moment. Metropolis is tracking around 25 medium/large searches in the city including PWC, Walker Morris, Equifax and more space for BSkyB amongst others.

In terms of development, future Leeds office supply levels are set to be boosted with schemes on site at Central Square, Wellington Place, 3 Sovereign Square and 6 Queen Street which will deliver 450,000 sq ft of office space over the next two years. further new space is also potentially in the pipeline for 2017 could include: Latitude Blue (120,000 sq ft), 5 Wellington Place (70,000 sq ft), City Square House (175,000 sq ft) and the Yorkshire Post Site (200,000 sq ft).

There are a series of lease events over 2015-16 amongst the financial services and legal sector tenants in Leeds, which could trigger up to 300,000 sq ft of requirements. There are also over 80 lease expiries amongst smaller firms due to be resolved over 2015 and 2016.

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