Opportunities, softer Brexit, shift in policy agenda, and extraordinary; these are all words which have been in the headlines over the last few days. Whilst it is indeed a completely self-inflicted shambles by the government, the market keeps moving, the phones keep ringing and the local economy has not changed overnight. Fundamentally we still have good requirements in the market and a shortage of stock in both the commercial and residential sectors. Brexit negotiations are imminent and a softer stance would be welcomed by many in business, particularly in a City such as Derby with a high level of exports.
These are still exciting times in Derby. Substantial development opportunities are coming forward such as Becket Well, Assembly Rooms, DRI, North Riverside. The retail and leisure sector is going strong, with Intu attracting brands such as Carluccios, Cath Kidston, Goldsmiths, Hollywood Bowl and Paradise Island Adventure Golf opening in the Centre. The revival of St Peter’s Quarter continues helped by the City Council committing to public realm improvements, with the aid of funds from the D2N2 Local Enterprise Partnership. No doubt this will have assisted in the decision of TK Maxx to return to the City Centre, committing to 22,000 sq ft on Albion Street.
The popularity of the Connect Derby incubator scheme and serviced offices is testament to the entrepreneurship and creativity within the City and the challenge going forward is having suitable space to accommodate these growing businesses. With Pride Park office stock effectively full and an acute shortage of any grade A stock at all in the City Centre, new build or high quality refurbishment will be essential to the ongoing prosperity of the City. Everybody has heard of Rolls-Royce, Toyota and Bombardier, but every week I deal with some of the many businesses on industrial estates and business parks around Derby doing cutting edge work ranging from making aerofoils for Formula 1 cars, to software for train systems to testing the latest power generation prototypes. It is this wealth of talent that helps keep the local industrial and office market moving and they seek top quality buildings, which are increasingly in short supply. In the pastwe have seen some of these businesses migrate to outlying towns along the M1 or A38 corridors, so the City needs to continue its focus on retaining such companies.
FHP has been awarded the 2017 accolade of Most Active Agents for Derbyshire, by the industry leading journal Estates Gazette, having completed more deals in Derbyshire than any other commercial property agency. To add to the collection, FHP Property Consultants also picked up the Nottinghamshire title for a win win across the region.