CLS pre­dicts shift from city skyscraper­s to low-rise sub­ur­bia

The Daily Telegraph - Business - - Business -

◆ Com­mer­cial prop­erty land­lord CLS Hold­ings says it ex­pects stronger de­mand for lower-rise of­fices as busi­nesses try to avoid cram­ming work­ers into densely packed skyscraper­s, writes Rachel Mil­lard.

The FTSE 250 com­pany, which has a £2bn port­fo­lio in the UK, Ger­many and

Spain, ex­pects work­ing from home to per­sist to some de­gree.

CLS has col­lected 99pc of rent for the first half and, so far, 95pc of rent due for the third quar­ter, backed by its gov­ern­ment and large cor­po­rate ten­ants.

Fi­nance chief An­drew Kirk­man said: “Hav­ing win­dows and not be­ing so de­pen­dent on lift ac­cess is im­por­tant. Em­ploy­ees are go­ing to want more el­bow room.” There is also a shift to­wards the sub­urbs to avoid pub­lic trans­port into big city cen­tre of­fices.

How­ever, the com­pany be­lieves it is too soon to call time on the of­fice sky­scraper, not­ing that de­mand for high-rises picked up after 9/11 de­spite pre­dic­tions to the con­trary.

Over the six months to the end of June, the value of CLS’s prop­erty port­fo­lio fell 2pc in the UK but rose by 2.6pc in Ger­many and 0.4pc in France. Net rental in­come rose 5pc to £56.5m.

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