Take-up of central London offices increased by nearly a third inthe latest quarter, from around 2.5 million sf to around 3.25million sf. Over the first three quarters of 2001, take-up is nowonly 11% lower than over the first three quarters of 2000, whichwas itself a record high year. However availability has risen to6.1% from 4.1 % in Summer 2000. But GVA Grimley points out thatthis is still low by historic standards: in the early 1990savailability reached 20%.

'While this scarcity of supply has undoubtedly been an importantfactor in keeping availability low and holding up rental values,take-up rates also indicate that demand has remained strong,' saidNick McCalmont-Woods, office agency partner at GVA Grimley.

Prime rents are now static in all three main sub-markets at subareas, at £79 ($116) per sf in the West End; £65 ($95) in the Cityand £45 ($66) per sf in Docklands. The rate of rental growth hasslowed every quarter since peaking in late 2000.

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