A report by JLL real estate services has revealed that the market for office space in Manchester grew in 2021, outpacing other similarly sized cities.

The report indicates that the office space market has grown in six major UK cities in 2021, with Manchester having the largest growth. More than £700m was invested in 1.1 million sq. ft. of office space in the region, which is only 10% below the 10-year average.

The Covid pandemic slowed the growth of office space deals, but the data published by JLL shows that in 2021 as Covid restrictions were eased, the market in Manchester bounced back and now exceeds pre-pandemic levels.

The total value of Manchester office space deals was the largest of the “Big Six cities”, the other five being Leeds, Birmingham, Bristol, Glasgow and Edinburgh.

Amongst the large office deals in 2021 was the NatWest occupation of One Hardman Boulevard, a deal worth £292m, and the leasing of 115,066 sq. ft. in Circle Square by Roku.

The director (office agency) of JLL North West, Chris Mulcahy, summarised the report’s findings:

“Manchester’s office market continues to lead the Big Six in terms of regional office space and our latest report points to a positive post-COVID resurgence, led by Roku’s Circle Square deal.”

A high demand for good-quality sustainable office space in the Manchester area remains in place. Prime rents have reached £38.50 per sq. ft. and this is expected to rise to £40 or more in 2022.