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HOUSTON-The Houston office market is still looking for a big national recovery to help pull out of a decided slump. A report recently published by O’Connor & Associates gives a glimpse into the second quarter office market results. The numbers don’t indicate a turnaround, but researchers are quick to point out Houston’s office market is still faring better than most metros.

“The local economy has seemingly begun to resemble a punch-drunk boxer unable to avoid further hits,” writes Richard Zigler, O’Connor’s research director. “We should also be thankful, that Houston is not as bad off as our neighbors to the north, where 22% office vacancy suggests that the Cowboys are not the only ones in Dallas on a losing streak.”

The one bright spot, Zigler tells GlobeSt.com, is Houston’s western tier, a corridor that includes the Katy Freeway, Energy Corridor, the far west, Westchase and Sugar Land. Zigler says the west has experienced strong activity thus far this quarter with Westchase strongly rebounding and absorbing 140,000 sf. He attributes the current success to companies responding to the city’s heavy traffic by leasing space closer to the suburbs.

There is no good news on the horizon for the Galleria submarket. Thus far in the second quarter, the Galleria has negative absorption of 758,072 sf. Zigler believes again that traffic is a contributing factor since the submarket’s extremely heavy traffic deters tenants from signing on the dotted line.

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