Confidence on the rise in Cardiff & Swansea city centres

Cardiff Central Square

With Q2 letting figures now out, it seems that Cardiff and Swansea city centres are benefitting from business expansion. So what opportunities are emerging?

National commercial property consultancy Lambert Smith Hampton (LSH) has confirmed that Cardiff saw above average take up with 145,000 sq ft snapped up by occupiers in Q2.

The city centre dominated activity with 75% of the transactions, with perhaps the most significant the expansion of Deloitte which has taken 40,000 sq ft at 6 Park Street.

Last year the company announced plans to double its workforce in Wales as it delivers audit, consulting, corporate finance and tax services to local businesses. The move secures a presence close to the new hub of business activity just north of the Central Square development.

But as Kate Simpson, Associate Director at LSH says: “We are looking at a potential problem in Cardiff as Grade A stock has now dwindled to under 100,000 sq ft and the concern is that future demand for commercial space will not be met however certain developers are taking advantage and constructing as we speak”.

In Swansea, there has been a similar spike in activity, with motor insurance firm ERS taking up the most notable letting of 34,000 sq ft of Grade A space at Crucible Park in Swansea Vale.

Tom Rees, Associate Director at LSH’s Swansea office comments: “Whilst this is great news for the Swansea, Grade A city centre stock remains low with only 10,500 sq ft remaining.

“At the fringes of the city centre, there is a further 10,000 sq ft available at SA1 Waterfront and another 15,000 sq ft of city centre Grade A space in the pipeline and planned for completion in Q4 2015, which will provide flexible floor space to small and medium sized occupiers.

“To be candid, the race is on to provide office space that will attract a premium. There is an oversupply of Grade B stock and so forward thinking landlords have begun refurbishment programs which is a positive step.”