The office market in Chennai witnessed an overall absorption of less than 1 million sq ft during the first quarter this year. The Central Business District (CBD) encompassing areas of Anna Salai, T Nagar, RK Salai, Alwarpet, Nungambakkam witnessed a dip in demand for office space with negligible absorption of around 0.09 million sq ft being reported in the present quarter, largely in smaller and medium format office spaces.
However, due to negligible supply addition rental values firmed up by about 2-3% on a quarter over quarter basis, according to the first quarter report by CB Richard Ellis.
The Off/Non CBD micro-market of MRC Nagar, Guindy and Taramani witnessed stagnation in market activity when compared to the previous quarter. Absorption was recorded at around 0.16 million sq ft. However rental values witnessed a marginal increase of 4-5% on a q-o-q basis, primarily due to low supply pressures when compared to the suburban micro-markets.
A nominal supply of 0.08 million sq ft was released; vacancy level was in the range of 3 – 4%. The Suburban Business District (SBD) including areas such as Velachery, Perungudi, Mount Poonamallee Road witnessed maximum activity during this quarter with an absorption of almost 0.32 million sq ft being reported, compared to around 0.25 million sq ft in the previous quarter.
On the supply side, no significant additions were witnessed during the review period. Rental values increased by about 5-8% on a quarter on quarter basis; vacancy level was around 7 – 8% in the present quarter.
The Peripheral Business District (PBD) of Perungalathur, Sholinganallur, Siruseri, Ambattur and GST Road witnessed minimal activity with absorption of only around 0.08 million sq ft, compared to around 0.45 million sq ft in the previous quarter. The region witnessed an addition of around 0.72 million sq ft of fresh IT space, the only major supply addition in the city during the review period. Supply pressures and stagnating demand led to a downward pressure being created on rental values and a steep increment in vacancy levels to around 18-20% in the present quarter.
The overall market sentiment, however, continues to remain positive which is expected to translate into healthy absorption over the coming few quarters. The SEZ segment should continue to witness supply addition, thereby being a major contributor to the office market in the city. IT and back-office operations are expected to continue to remain major contributors to office demand and transaction activity. Rental values are expected to remain largely stable across most micro-markets over the coming few quarters.
Source – Property Consultant