Office occupany ticks up slightly in Roanoke in 2016
Office occupancy increased slightly in Roanoke last year, from 81 percent to 82 percent, according to Poe & Cronk Real Estate Group’s 30th Annual Office Market Survey.
“2016 was about the start of the recovery cycle for our office market. We are seeing an increase in demand for quality office space as we repositioned and reformatted space to meet the needs of modern office users,” Matt Huff, executive vice president and chief operating office of Poe & Cronk, said in a statement.
The increase in occupancy rates in the city’s central business and suburban business districts represents a change in momentum compared to a 5 percent decline in office occupancy the previous year. The Poe & Cronk report says the upward trend indicates continued improvement for 2017 as older, less functional space continues to be renovated or repurposed for a different use.
“The upcoming challenge for landlords and tenants will be affordable and accessible parking,” said Huff. He noted that as tenants continue to strive for efficiency, more people are occupying less space. “We used to space plan around 250 square feet per employee inclusive of common areas. Employers are now seeking to lower that average to around 175 square feet. Going forward this will drive a premium for properties with adequate parking and will affect how and where new office space is developed.”
Poe & Cronk developed Roanoke’s office market survey in 1987 and has conducted it annually. This year’s survey incorporates data covering more than 100 nongovernmental office buildings measuring 10,000 square feet or more.