Local News

New Plan May Shift Occupancy Rate In Downtown Raleigh Into Overdrive

Posted March 14, 2005

— One renter wants to drive over the competition near Fayetteville Street Mall. If you refer a tenant that leases four floors at 333 Corporate Plaza, you get to drive a BMW Z-4 free for two years.

Downtown promoters said all the for-lease signs can be misleading. Most of what is available is small groundfloor space, not large office space. In reality, there is just a 9 percent vacancy rate in downtown Raleigh compared to about 12 percent in other downtowns. Across the Triangle, 15 percent of office space is empty.

"Nine percent particularly when you put a building the size of the new Progress Energy building on the market where they vacated space. We were afraid the vacancy rate would increase, but that space was absorbed well," said Margaret Mullen, of the

Downtown Raleigh Alliance

.

In a matter of days,

Fayetteville Street Mall

will be torn to pieces. Even with construction, building owner Don Carter does not think renting parts of the building will be hard to do.

"We think anyone who really wants to be downtown will come downtown," he said.

The construction is expected to impact small retailers more than office employees. Although the car may be an incentive for a commercial real estate broker, there is also an incentive for the tenant. The company that rents all the space gets naming rights to the building.

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