HOUSTON – (Realty News Report) – The Uptown/Galleria real estate sector has traditionally been one of Houston’s strongest. Is that trend continuing? Has the area been affected by recent corporate relocations? The neighborhood also has been one of the city’s most congested. Is the traffic challenge easing with a new mass transit plan? To find out, Realty News Report sat down with Sue Rogers, Principal in Cresa’s Houston office. Cresa is the world’s largest commercial real estate advisory firm that exclusively represents occupiers and specializes in the delivery of fully integrated real estate solutions. During her thirty plus years in the industry, Sue has been recognized for her outstanding contribution to both her profession and the Houston community.
Realty News Report: What’s going on in the Galleria office market? Vacancy up? Down? More space coming on line?
Sue Rogers: The Galleria submarket has been able to maintain demand despite the downturn in the energy industry and a glut of available space across Houston. According to CoStar, vacancy has decreased to about 15% from 18%. Relative to space coming on line, BHP recently announced it would be listing 273,000 SF in its new building for sublease, which is roughly half of its new tower. There could be some additional space coming on line as Hines relocates its offices from Williams Tower to their new building Downtown, while Rowan has put its space on the sublease market after being acquired by Ensco. In addition, Marathon Oil is rumored to be looking at spaces in the Energy Corridor and could be vacating their current location on San Felipe.
Realty News Report: Galleria office space is competing against other submarkets such as downtown and energy corridor. Why would a tenant choose the Galleria over another submarket?
Sue Rogers: The Galleria has always had the appeal of being a location that is centrally located as it sits almost midway between the popular Energy Corridor and the Central Business District. While construction is currently impeding traffic on Post Oak and the West Loop, the Galleria is one of the few walkable submarkets where tenants can work, live, and play. Once the traffic enhancements are completed, the submarket should gain added mobility, improving access to the area’s high-end amenities and making it even more desirable.
Realty News Report: What are one or two major office projects coming on line in the area this year or next?
Sue Rogers: Park Place River Oaks is a proposed development which will be strategically located near the High Street retail corridor, overlooking several acres of green space. The project will consist of 200,000 SF of Class A office space and should break ground in January and be completed by the spring of 2020. In addition, DC Partners will be adding to its site at San Felipe and I-610 with a seven-story, 92,340 square foot building which will provide a “park and stay” work environment.
Realty News Report: What do you think of the road work on Post Oak? Will it solve the congestion problems in the area when completed?
Sue Rogers: In theory, the use of the buses on Post Oak will help ease traffic congestion, but there are some serious questions as to whether or not it will be utilized.
Realty News Report: If traffic doesn’t improve how will that impact the Galleria office market?
Sue Rogers: Traffic and convenience are always a location driver for tenants in the market. The decision to be close to employees’ homes or being centrally located with maximum amenities and freeway exposure is one that seems to change based on both employment growth and the potential to take advantage of competitive markets. Because the Galleria is continuing to add residential development and amenities where people can live, walk or easily commute to work, and shop should help continue to make the Galleria a desirable place to be for tenants.
Dec.17, 2018 Realty News Report Copyright 2018