The office market in Westchester continued gaining strength in the fourth quarter of 2021 and closed the year on a stable footing, according to a new report from the commercial real estate services firm Newmark.
The demand for space in Westchester during the fourth quarter reached 542,000 square feet, a high since the Covid pandemic started. Westchester’s total inventory of office space was 27,11,634 square feet and at the end of the year 25.14% remained available for lease. The 25.14% was slightly lower than the 25.7% of space available in the third quarter of last year and just below the 25.2% availability in the fourth quarter of 2020.
The average asking rent for Westchester office space was been fairly stable, with $28.44 per square foot being asked in the fourth quarter of 2021 compared with $28.34 in the fourth quarter of 2020.
Newmark said that leasing activity during 2021 totaled 2 million square feet and was consistent with the county’s annual average from 2015 to 2019.
Newmark said that a lease in the fourth quarter of last year by the New York Blood Center for 187,181 square feet at 601 Midland Ave. in Rye became the top lease transaction for 2021. Just behind it were TierPoint’s leasing of 167,270 square feet at 11 and 17 Skyline Drive in Hawthorne and Amalgamated Life Insurance Company’s lease for 105,000 square feet at 333 Westchester Ave. in White Plains.
“The pandemic continued to bring challenges to markets across the globe, but also caused business leaders to reimagine the workplace and adapt to a new wave of employees working on a hybrid schedule both remotely and in-office,” Newmark said. “The economy and property markets have proven their resilience, though there are obstacles to navigate to continue to repurpose obsolete assets.”
Newmark noted that office availability in White Plains was below that of the county as a whole with a 2.1% drop from the third quarter’s 21.2% availability to 20% for the fourth quarter of 2021.