According to the Manchester Office Market Summary take-up incentral Manchester over the first half of 2001 totalled 320,086 sf,23% down on the second half of last year, but equal to the firstsix months of 2000,which was a record year. The report notes thatwhile there were no major pre-lets in the city centre market, GradeA take-up rose 6% on the preceding six months.

Availability in Central Manchester stood at 1,095,145 sf, a 6%increase on the same period in the previous year. But Grade Aavailability continued to fall, standing at 60,000 sf, representinga decline of 33% over 12 months and 10% since the start of theyear. And with only one major scheme under construction in the citycentre--the 66,500-sf No 1 Marsden Street, which is due forcompletion in November--this figure is unlikely to rise.

Demand for office space at the mid year point stood at 2,415,600sf, with 1,508,000 sf of new enquiries registered by Jones LangLaSalle since the beginning of the year. Although held back by ashortage of Grade A product, prime rents stood at £23.75 ($34.64)per sf.

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