From the New York Times: All That Empty Office Space Belongs to Someone


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5 Responses

  1. Jaybird

    My absolute favorite paragraph from the story:

    Asked about the worst-case scenario for his own business, Mr. Gural said: “Rents will be lower. Occupancy will be lower. We won’t be as profitable. The worst part about that is that it might affect some of the philanthropy we do.”Report

  2. Damon

    Fact: My old company sent everyone but production employees home during covid. 2 years later, they were told to start coming back. There was instant pushback. Marketing said: “we just finished 2 years of record sales and profitability and we did it virtually. Screw you. We just demonstrated we don’t need to be in the office or travel as much.” They are still at home.Report

  3. Michael Cain

    New York’s offices in late August were under 41 percent of their prepandemic occupancy.

    I wonder how much this varies from city to city based on the cost and difficulty of the commute? 35 years ago when I lived in New Jersey I had neighbors that worked in Manhattan. Commuting time was 90 minutes each way: three hours per day. I don’t suppose it’s any better today from that area. How are downtowns doing where the commute is 30 minutes, or 15?Report

    • Chip Daniels in reply to Michael Cain

      Its bad everywhere.
      Even pre-panemic they were calling it the “Retail Apocalypse”, where online sales were devastating brick and mortar establishments.

      The same technology which allowed us to shop in our pajamas allows to work in them as well, so the pandemic probably supercharged a shift which was going to happen eventually anyway.

      Which means that not only are office vacancies hitting historic highs, the entire ecosystem which fed off them- restaurants, bars, convenience stores, printers, etc. are also suffering.

      Right now al the chatter in the development world is about how to convert these offices into housing, and that’s probably what most of them will end up becoming.Report

    • Jaybird in reply to Michael Cain

      San Francisco is at 31%, according to the google.
      Chicago gives me “23.4% direct availability and 5.1% sublease availability”.
      Los Angeles has a “historic high” of 22.5 percent.
      Seattle is at 12.21%.
      Portland is at 20.3%.
      Boston is at 10.5%.
      Denver sits at 20.9%.
      Colorado Springs is at 10.7%.Report

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