Phoenix Wants New Office Buildings Downtown

Published: Monday, December 9, 2019 - 5:05am
Updated: Monday, December 9, 2019 - 3:46pm
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Christina Estes/KJZZ
Several new apartment buildings and hotels have recently been built with more planned downtown.

Construction in downtown Phoenix is bringing new apartments and hotels, but there’s a key development area that’s missing.

Downtown needs new office space, according to the city’s economic development director. Christine Mackay said in the last five years, the office vacancy rate has fallen from 30% to 10%, or about 1.3 million square feet of space.

“The product that’s left is kind of an older, obsolete product. It’s not a product that companies are looking for today,” she said.

Mackay told the city’s Workforce and Economic Development Subcommittee that her team is working on ways to encourage developers to build new office space. When a company considers downtown and then chooses another location, Mackay said they ask why.

“The biggest thing that we found is the fear of lack of available parking, the lack of available floor space, but then the misperception about our workforce and the affordability of being able to be in the market,” she said.

She said her research department has analyzed data that shows a robust workforce, and they’re sharing that information with brokers and others involved in choosing locations.

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