PHOENIX-The Central Business District, by far the largest submarket in the metropolitan area, posts an overall 14.05% vacancy rate in the third quarter, slightly better than the 15.8% overall vacancy rate for the entire market, shows a third-quarter ”Market Snapshot” by the local Grubb & Ellis office. However, the 14.1 million-sf CBD is really two submarkets — Downtown and Uptown.

Uptown is the larger of the two, with 8.5 million sf of space. It has 1.2 million sf vacant in the third quarter and office vacancy rate of 14.29%. In the third quarter, it absorbed 101,187 sf, but in the first nine months of the year it has 86,888 sf of negative absorption.

There’s no construction underway in the Uptown area. The asking rental rate in class A properties is $19.98 per sf, below the average asking rate in the entire market of $23.36 per sf. The asking rate for class B properties is $18.14, below the overall average asking rate of $19.72 for all class B properties, Grubb & Ellis notes.

The Downtown CBD submarket, with 5.6 million sf, has 766,321 sf vacant in the third quarter, for an overall vacancy rate of 13.67%, slightly better than the larger Uptown area. It absorbed 20,551 sf in the third quarter and 17,876 sf through September. It has 407,000 sf under construction, which includes spec and build-to-suit for lease, is more than in any other submarket.

The asking rental rate for class-A space is $21.80 per sf and $18.34 for class B space, according to Grubb & Ellis.

The next biggest submarket is Scottsdale, with 6.38 million sf of space. Scottsdale has 1.026 million sf of space vacant, giving it a vacancy rate of 16.11%. It shows negative absorption of 17,635 sf in the third quarter, although it has managed to absorb a total of 91,000 sf in the first nine months of the year. The average asking rate is $23.92 per sf for class A space and $20.36 for class B space, according to Grubb & Ellis.

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