Greater Boston Office Market Closes Exceptionally Strong Year with 1.4 Million SF of Absorption


officeSTATus Q4 2015--Trendlines BOSTON– Greater Boston’s office market closed fourth-quarter 2015 with 1.4 million square feet of positive absorption, its 11th straight quarter of positive absorption, according to Transwestern | RBJ’s new “officeSTATus – Q4 2015” report. With 3.9 million square feet absorbed during the year, 2015 was one of Boston’s strongest years since 2006.

“Each submarket in Greater Boston had significant positive absorption during the quarter, an excellent indicator of overall market health,” said Northeast Research Director Chase Bourdelaise. “Some areas had results not seen in more than a decade. Taken together, it was one of the most dynamic quarters in the past decade.”

Highlights from the report include:
• Market-wide vacancy averaged 12.2 percent for 2015, the lowest annual average since 2002. Vacancy for the quarter remained steady from third quarter at 12.1 percent.
• Class A asking lease rates topped $42 per square foot for the first time since 2002, reaching $42.06 in fourth quarter, 3.9 percent higher than first-quarter 2015.
• Boston’s Central Business District had 502,000 square feet of absorption in fourth quarter and totaled 1.58 million square feet for the year, the highest annual total since 2006.
• Vacancy in Boston’s Seaport District dropped to 8.3 percent, its lowest level since 2000, when inventory was 6 million square feet smaller than today.
• Cambridge closed the quarter at a remarkable 2.7 percent vacancy, its lowest mark on record.
• There was 314,000 square feet of positive absorption in the Route 128 submarkets and 328,000 square feet in the Interstate 495 submarkets.