South Florida’s office leasing market this year was spurred by tenants seeking to relocate to better spaces, often in more eco-friendly buildings.
“The trend we’re seeing in the marketplace is that tenants are seeking new office space that allows them to hire, retain and motivate the workforce, as well as to better reflect their image,” said Stephen Rutchik, executive managing director at Colliers International South Florida. Energy-efficient and LEED-certified buildings are often preferred, he said.
Co-working firms, including WeWork, also continued to sign leases as major tenants in 2019, Rutchik said.
Certain submarkets, like Brickell in Miami, downtown Fort Lauderdale and downtown West Palm Beach recorded all-time high rental rates and record lows vacancies. “The submarkets that have outperformed are the live-work-play submarkets,” he said.
Brickell topped them all, with record office rental rates of $65 per square foot, up 10 percent to 15 percent from the previous year, and a 7 percent vacancy rate, according to Rutchik.
Here is The Real Deal’s list of top office leases signed in 2019:
Lennar Corp., 156K sf
Lennar Corp. agreed to lease 156,123 square feet for its new corporate headquarters at 5505 Blue Lagoon Drive in Miami.
The building is owned by Franklin Street Properties Corp., a Wakefield, Massachusetts-based, publicly traded real estate investment trust. The lease is for an initial term of 16 years, Franklin Street said.
WeWork, 146K sf
WeWork signed a lease for 146,000 square feet at 830 Brickell Avenue to 830 Southeast First Avenue. The development, planned by Vlad Doronin’s OKO Group, is expected to open in early 2021.
WeWork will occupy 10 floors at the project across from Brickell City Centre, where the company already operates a co-working site. The new space is expected to be its second largest in the Southeast and could be the largest in Florida, according to a WeWork spokesperson.
Centene Corp.’s Sunshine Health, 145K sf
Centene Corp., the parent of Sunshine Health, leased 145,322 square feet, at 1700 North University Drive in Plantation.
Canon, 122K sf
Canon leased 122,000 to 127,000 square feet at 4530 Conference Way South in Boca Raton.
Ultimate Software, 101K
Ultimate Software leased 100,710 square feet at 1340 Concord Terrace in Sunrise. Weston-based Ultimate Software occupies the entire building within the Sawgrass International Corporate Park in Sunrise.
WeWork, 89K sf
WeWork signed a lease for 88,880 square feet at the Southeast Financial Center at 200 South Biscayne Boulevard in downtown Miami.
WeWork will occupy four full floors in the 55-story building. WeWork will open in phases, with two floors expected to open by the end of the year, and the other two slated to open by summer 2020.
Hayes Locums, 73K sf
Hayes Locums, a temporary staffing firm for doctors, leased 72,571 square feet for a new headquarters at the Cypress Financial Center at 5900 North Andrews Avenue in Fort Lauderdale.
BAC Florida Bank, 63K sf
BAC Florida Bank signed a lease for 63,009 square feet at the Plaza at Coral Gables South Tower, a project under construction at 3011 Ponce de Leon Boulevard in Coral Gables.
The bank plans to move its corporate offices there in 2022, occupying the top three floors.
TBC Corp., 60K sf
TBC Corp., a marketer of automotive replacement tires, leased 60,000 square feet at 4250 Design Center Drive in Palm Beach Gardens.
Florida Office of the Attorney General, 54K sf
The Florida Office of the Attorney General renewed its lease for 53,965 square feet at 110 Tower at 110 Southeast Sixth Street in downtown Fort Lauderdale.
SOURCE: TRD analysis of brokerage data, as provided by Colliers International, news clippings and market reports.