London office market falls thanks to uptake of remote work

London office market falls thanks to uptake of remote work

london office marketA new report from property consultancy Cluttons looks at the new challenges the Prime Central London office market faces in 2021/22, with issues such as Brexit and the immediate impacts of the global pandemic – but also longer-term problems like changing lifestyle preferences, the uptake of remote working and climate change. More →

Green building council publishes new guidance for UK local authorities

Green building council publishes new guidance for UK local authorities

green buildingThe UK Green Building Council has published new guidance for local authorities on the environmental performance of their new buildings. The organisation has published its latest Commercial Playbook to “fill the gap left by national policy, which is not currently delivering change at the pace that is required to meet the UK’s environmental commitments”. More →

The truth about the workplace comes out of the well

The truth about the workplace comes out of the well

The debate about the workplace and the future of work gets more interesting by the week. In the last few days alone, I’ve listened in on three great speakers talking about the opportunities, challenges, nuances and complexities of it all in a way that has been all but impossible in the past 18 months. In addition, Nigel Oseland has published his new book on people-centred work. Jo Owen’s new book on hybrid working is similarly a breath of fresh air on that particular subject. More →

The commercial property market is changing rapidly, and for the better

The commercial property market is changing rapidly, and for the better

commercial propertyPredicting behaviours in the commercial property market is never an easy thing, yet we know that the pandemic has drastically altered this market. Whilst some players have advocated ‘the end is nigh’ for all office space, research shows a different picture emerging – namely the office space as we know it is evolving into something different. The impact of prolonged uncertainty has fuelled change.  However, there are other forces at work shaping a brighter and more varied future for office space. More →

Central London office pre-lets surge due to pent-up demand

Central London office pre-lets surge due to pent-up demand

LondonCompletions in central London are expected to hit a three-year high, with 5.5m sq ft scheduled for delivery by the end of this year, according to Savills research. More →

Demand for office space outside London could soar, claims KPMG report

Demand for office space outside London could soar, claims KPMG report

New ways of working will boost UK productivity and increase employment levels in cities outside of London, according to a new report from KPMG. And as businesses in some sectors prepare for employees to spend two to three days a week working from home on a permanent basis, demand for office space could see capacity potentially increase by as much as 40 percent, according to a new KPMG report, New working patterns and the transformation of UK business landscape.

The increased availability of office space in major business hubs is expected to attract businesses from smaller areas to fill up the vacant space, with cities like Manchester, Bristol, Glasgow, Leeds and Birmingham set to see employment rise by 5-10 percent as a result. This will have a significant knock on effect for demand for office space.

Areas in central London are also expected to benefit, as well as smaller towns and cities with a large proportion of the workforce working partially from home. Meanwhile, less dense business areas could see a decline in employment and may need to be transformed into more residential, leisure, retail and other uses.

As the business landscape consolidates, KPMG analysis also claims the change could boost overall UK labour productivity by 0.5 percent, thanks to businesses being able to tap into a larger pool of workers, suppliers, and clients.

Yael Selfin, Chief Economist at KPMG UK, commented on the report: “As we emerge from the pandemic, businesses need to adapt to the new environment they will be facing. Some may choose to relocate to larger business hubs to boost profitability, while others in less central areas could see their local customer base profile change. While the overall impact on the UK economy is expected to be positive, the changes ahead could prove challenging for those businesses already saddled by the pandemic.”

The report examines how local high streets in residential towns and neighbourhoods are expected to reap the benefits of greater homeworking through increased demand by residents during the week. But the impact on high streets across the UK is unlikely to be uniform. Some places may be hit relatively hard by the loss of office workers due to their proximity to a larger business hub, which may be compounded by the loss of commuter footfall among remaining employees due to the prevalence of working from home.

Yael Selfin added: “As people spend more time working from home and less time in the office, we could see a revival of the local high street.

“They will need to transform into places of purpose to meet demand for community-based services, hospitality, culture, as well as retail. High street offering in smaller towns and cities may need to become more focused on residents’ needs and less focused on businesses and commuters.

“This transformation will require local government, residents and businesses to work together to map their future shape and make concrete plans to support and enable the necessary changes to make the most of the new post-Covid business reality.”

Chris Hearld, Head of Regions at KPMG UK, commented: “Over time, a shift in business location could support the rise of several major business hubs across the UK. An increase in the concentration of businesses and workers has the potential to make those businesses located there more productive and enable these areas to serve as the engines of economic growth. This should also support the Government’s Levelling Up agenda. Cities like Manchester, Leeds, Birmingham, and Newcastle stand to benefit from such a consolidation of business locations. For this to happen they will need government to work closely with local leaders to ensure the transition is smooth and any barriers to growth are quickly ironed out.”

Landlords and occupiers must work together to meet climate change challenge

Landlords and occupiers must work together to meet climate change challenge

flexible work and climate changeDisruption, cost, building style, individual goals, responsibility and shared space are cited as the key sustainability challenges for the flexible office sector, according to the latest research report from The Instant Group. But while there is still a lot of work to be done in the sector as the role of the workplace evolves, Instant says that flex operators have an opportunity to lead the way in meeting the challenge of climate change. By creating innovative, low-carbon buildings, curating a clear engagement strategy with occupiers and landlords, and ensuring a low-carbon ambition is understood and adopted by everyone, flex operators can be the first to implement highly sustainable workplaces. More →

Business confidence back to pre-pandemic levels, with fewer plans to shrink offices

Business confidence back to pre-pandemic levels, with fewer plans to shrink offices

CEOs of the world’s largest businesses are increasingly optimistic about the outlook for their own business, according to the latest KPMG CEO Outlook Survey. Despite a slower ‘return to normal’ than expected, their confidence in the global economy has returned to levels not seen since the start of the pandemic. The number planning to reduce their office footprints has fallen dramatically since the height of the pandemic, and instead there is a growing focus on introducing flexible working cultures. More →

Overseas investment in UK regional offices soars

Overseas investment in UK regional offices soars

overseasInvestments in offices outside the capital for the first half of this year hit £3.58bn – 18 percent above the long-term average for the first half of this year, Savills research claims. Overseas investors accounted for two-thirds of the £3.58bn of investments from January to June 2021 – 38 percent above the five-year average. More →

Return to office doesn’t mean occupiers have lost sight of flexibility, claims report

Return to office doesn’t mean occupiers have lost sight of flexibility, claims report

return to office is underway

Offices will repopulate over the remainder of this year, led by small companies – those with fewer than 100 employees, according to the EMEA Occupier Survey of 130 companies from real estate advisor CBRE. The survey found that small companies are further advanced in their return to office. Over 80 percent of small companies report all locations are now open. This compares with only a third of the largest companies, although a majority of them have opened more than half of their sites. More →

Digital twin and other tech to benefit from landmark $3.5trillion infrastructure package

Digital twin and other tech to benefit from landmark $3.5trillion infrastructure package

Siemens digital twinGrowth in key tech sectors is set to rocket after a landmark $1 trillion infrastructure package bill passed in the US Senate, part of a comprehensive $3.5 trillion plan within President Biden’s post-COVID Build Back Better initiative and paralleling the UN’s Race To Zero campaign. There had been an upward trend in share prices for companies in several tech sectors already, but Pitchbook research identified nanotechnology and digital twin technology as most likely to gain from the new bill – the largest public investment in America’s infrastructure for decades. More →

Southeast office take-up higher than five-year average

Southeast office take-up higher than five-year average

officePent-up demand on hold in 2020 has returned with office take-up in the first half of this year nearly a quarter above the five-year average, according to Savills‘ data. Demand is outstripping supply with a development pipeline equal to five months take up in an average year said the property agent. More →

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