Commercial space available Downtown at highest point in two years: CBRE

November 13, 2012 02:00PM

The amount of space available in the Downtown market rose to its highest level in nearly two years, as more than 2.9 million square feet officially hit the leasing market, figures released today by commercial firm CBRE Group show.

As expected, the availability rate for the Downtown market rose in October to 13.7 percent, up from 10.6 percent in September with the addition of more than 2.5 million square feet of space at Brookfield Office Properties’ World Financial Center and other properties, falling within 12 months of availability last month, the CBRE reports says.

While the industry had known for years the Merrill Lynch/Bank of America space would hit the market, the lease expires in 12 months. One year is a broadly used time period within which office space if statistically considered “available.”

The figure was the highest for the Downtown market since December 2010, when it was 13.8 percent, CBRE numbers show.

In addition the average asking rent for Downtown surged by $5.09 per foot to $45.22 per foot in the last month because the available space in the World Financial Center was priced above the market’s average, pushing up overall rent figures.

At the same time, Downtown’s leasing activity was above average, with 540,000 square feet leased including 131,946 square feet taken by the City of New York at SL Green Realty’s 100 Church Street.

Overall, Manhattan’s availability rate rose to 11.8 percent in October from 11 percent the prior month, while the average asking rent rose by $0.91 per foot to $57.32 per foot.

In Midtown, the availability rate rose to 12.2 percent from12 percent, and the average asking rent rose by $0.92 per foot to $66.03 per square foot.

In Midtown South, the availability rate remained flat at 8.4 percent, while the average asking rent fell by $0.70 per foot to $52.70 per square foot, the CBRE statistics show. –Adam Pincus