Stand-out performance for Bristol office market in final quarter of 2016

Peter Musgrove, head of office agency at LSH Bristol

The Bristol city centre office market outstripped expectations in Q4 2016, with transaction levels reaching almost double those of the previous quarter, national property consultancy Lambert Smith Hampton (LSH) reports.

In its latest Bristol Office Pulse report, LSH reveals that the total take-up of offices in the city centre was 267,239 sq ft in Q4, compared with 134,408 sq ft in Q3 and just 93,604 sq ft during the same period in 2015.

The out of town market also exceeded historic take-up levels (61,656 sq ft), and total take-up in the city has exceeded the five year average.

Commenting, Peter Musgrove, head of office agency at LSH Bristol, said that robust demand had led to continued pressure on availability in the city centre, and firms looking for larger office space were facing increasingly restricted choices.

“With no new office stock being brought to the market, businesses seeking buildings in excess of 10,000 sq ft may struggle to fulfil their requirements. We expect to see shortages in the coming months,” commented Peter.

“Cubex’s Aurora, as part of the wider Finzel’s Reach scheme, is now well underway with completion expected by the end of 2017 but this is the only new build scheme which is being built speculatively and one of just two schemes able to offer more than 50,000 sq ft of Grade A space this year. The other is Castleforge’s One Cathedral Square, which totals 53,000 sq ft and is due to complete in May 2017.”

While take-up in the city centre has almost reached the record levels seen in 2014, this is largely due to several large deals, including HMRC’s pre-let of 107,000 sq ft at 3 Glass Wharf.

In the out of town market, key deals in excess of 30,000 sq ft included the letting of 100 Bristol Business Park to Babcock and 930 Aztec West to Highway England.