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Oxbridge Office Rents Rising Five Times

A national property consultant has forecasted that office rents in Cambridge will reach the £50 sq ft figure within the net five years.

Witnessing an 11.9 per cent rise in a year, office rents in Oxbridge are soaring well ahead of the national 2.2 per cent average growth outside of the capital.

Dick Wise, Head of Business Space Agency at Bidwells, said: “The Cambridge office market is on track for its busiest year since 2014, during one of the most uncertain economic periods in living memory and now looks set to break the once unthought-of £50 per sq ft mark within five years.

“These latest figures demonstrate that this sustained global competition for space means the Cambridge market is now entering a ‘new reality’ in which well-located buildings are pre-let and occupied as soon as they are available.”

Cambridge in focus:

  • Prime rental values are now at £45 per sq ft – a 28.6 per cent rise since the end of 2015
  • Cambridge experienced the busiest six months of letting activity since 2016 in H1 2019
  • Prime office rents surged £3.50 per sq ft in the first half of 2019
  • Office & laboratory take up totalled 322,700 sq ft in the first half of 2019
  • The three biggest city deals of the period saw space taken by DisplayLink at 22 Cambridge Science Park (61,026 sq ft), AstraZeneca at Eastbrook House, Shaftesbury Road (51,100 sq ft) and WeWork (48,650 sq ft)

The university cities’ values are ahead of any other regional office in the UK, and only slightly below the key London markets such as Canary Wharf  (£48.50 per sq ft) and Stratford (£48 per sq ft).

Oxford in focus:

  • Prime office rents in Oxford reached a new high of £40 per sq ft in the first half of 2019
  • Supply fell to its lowest level in ten years
  • Rents have jumped up from £23 per sq ft at the end of 2014, a staggering 73.6% rise from the end of 2014
  • Registered demand for Oxford office and laboratory space stands at just under 1m sq ft

Wise adds: Wise said: “Oxford is a global hotspot for innovation and technology transfer, with a mature eco-system plus billions of pounds of public and private investment being made into fast-growing spin-out companies, national research facilities and infrastructure.

“The Government’s Industrial Strategy has focused on developing the UK’s knowledge-based economy, and the Oxford-Cambridge Arc is right at the centre of it. Our research finds the region now contains more than 20 per cent of the UK’s entire Science & Technology park floor space.”

Please take a look at the links below to see more of Bidwell’s research:

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