Ryden: Industrial still Scottish commercial real estate’s star performer

Commercial property consultants Ryden has encouraged developers to look to redevelopment and refurbishment of obsolete facilities as a faster way to satisfy demand offering potential for significant uplift in rents.

Ryden: Industrial still Scottish commercial real estate’s star performer

The Michelin Scotland Innovation Parc in Dundee

Unveiling the results of its 87th Scottish Property Review, Ryden said industrial is still commercial real estate’s star performer in Scotland with record levels of activity and demand outstripping supply in most areas. Key industrial estates will be developed out over the next 18 months, extensions to existing parks and infill projects are advancing, but it will be an insufficient supply of new product.

Demand for development sites also comes from housebuilders who are looking at large and peripheral locations to satisfy unit sales increases. This would normally push land values up, were it not for the significant increase in build costs.

In the cities, the office property market in Glasgow and particularly in Edinburgh staged a recovery in 2021. Active occupiers are focused on top quality space with ESG credentials and future flexibility, to attract staff back into the workplaces. This return of life to city centres is also important to retail and leisure occupiers who continue to struggle.

Glasgow city centre headline office rental reached £35.25 per sq ft at the new 177 Bothwell Street building, one of three new developments completing, and in Edinburgh space traded at £38 per sq ft, or higher on some specific floors. The lack of supply of Grade A office space in Edinburgh city centre is reaching critical levels.

Dr Mark Robertson, Ryden managing partner and Scottish Property Review editor, said: “Economic output appears to be reaching pre-pandemic levels but the societal and economic changes are still being felt through some property market sectors with retail continuing to be hit while logistics reap the benefits.

“The property investment market in Scotland accelerated during the latter half of 2021 as investors re-entered the market, particularly for industrial, city centre trophy offices and retail warehousing. The wall of money allocated to property as an asset class is expected to sustain this investment activity through 2022.”

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