Strong activity highlights City Region demand
16 May 2016
Strong activity in Leeds City Region’s property sector has seen an unprecedented volume of announcements not seen since before the global financial crisis, a fact supported by the 2016 Deloitte’s Crane Survey which reported that office construction was at its highest since 2007.
This was further evidenced by the Leeds Office Agents’ Forum (LOAF), which reported that office occupier take-up in Leeds has continued to show strong demand during the first quarter of 2016. The Forum stated that the out-of-town market outperformed the city centre for the first time since Q2 2012. Nowhere was this more evident than during the Leeds City Region’s MIPIM presence which saw announcements about the first anchor tenants for CEG’s Krikstall Forge.
Additionally announcements from PIB Insurance Brokers and national law firm Gateley Plc who have both selected new space in Leeds, further evidence the continued office demand. PIB has confirmed a new office in 32 Sovereign Square, while Gateley Plc has expanded within Evans Property Group’s Minerva office building in central Leeds, signing a 10 year lease on the whole 5,000 sq ft seventh floor, taking its total space within the building to 12,500 sq ft. The high demand for space was also evidenced at MIPIM, with MEPC confirming that No.6 Wellington Place was fully let four weeks after completion, to Sky Betting & Gaming, Squire Patton Boggs and Equifax.
Confidence across the City Region and the sector is also high in the areas of industrial and leisure property. Electrical manufacturer, BCA has confirmed it will buy and move into a 31,250 sq ft unit at Calderdale Council and Genr8 Developments’ Sowerby Bridge Copley Valley scheme, with the business space scheduled for completion at the end of December. Really Useful Products new headquarters and warehouse, the Butterfly Building in Castleford also is continuing to move forward, with the unique scheme due to complete in April 2017. Bradford has also seen a ground swell of activity since the opening of the Broadway at the end of 2015. The Xchange development close to the Westfield’s shopping centre is now on site and British Land recently received approval for a new cinema complex on the site of the former Royal Mail sorting office. This new development between Forster Square Station and The Broadway will deliver a six-screen cinema, eight restaurants and a gym, creating 200 jobs.
Alongside this, the Leeds City Region Enterprise Zone is continuing to grow, as Wilton Developments has secured planning permission for a new 83,000 sq ft commercial development on Newmarket Lane, known as Kinetic 45. It has also been reported that Amazon has selected the Logic Leeds site, developed by Muse Developments, for a base of operations. The US retailer will join an ever growing list of businesses that call the 142 hectare Enterprise Zone home, including John Lewis, Perspex Distribution and FedEx.