Take up of Central London office space soared at the end of last year, in a major boost for the City’s revival this winter.
Tenants took up 3.2m sq ft of London office space in the final quarter, exclusive data from real estate firm CBRE revealed.
This was the strongest take-up since the end of 2019 and marks a rebound of a sector that many believed would be wiped out as a result of pandemic-induced lockdowns. Take up was up 63 per cent for the whole year compared to 2020.
Creative industries took the largest slice of space last year, followed by banking and finance.
Businesses are keen to stake their claim in the capital with 35 per cent of central London office space under construction already let or under offer.
The largest pre-let deal of these totalled 267,000 sq ft at 1 Broadgate, EC2, which will be occupied by Allen & Overy once complete.
“The easing of government restrictions has provided more certainty to occupiers and buoyed the market, with take up of office space seeing renewed vigour as we start a new year,” Rob Madden, CBRE’s head of London office brokerage said.
It comes as office workers flooded back into London yesterday after the government dropped its instruction to work from home.
Up to 10am yesterday morning, there were some 1.19m entry and exits on the Tube, up nine per cent on last week. Transport for London said this was 50 per cent of normal levels.
Research by footfall monitor Infogrid found that the number of workers back in central London was up 42.7 per cent this week, compared to last week.
Major City players including PwC, KPMG, Goldman and Standard Chartered told CityA.M. they had called on staff to return to the office after the lifting of restrictions.