With two months of market statistics already recorded this year, I thought it would be a good time to do a year-over-year comparison. Interestingly enough, February 2013 marked overall availability’s high point in Manhattan, closing that month at 11.8 percent. Over the past 12 months since that high, the availability rate consistently declined or remained static for every month except one. And exactly a year later, at the end of February 2014, availability is down 110 basis points to 10.7 percent. It is also no surprise that, over this same time frame, more than 8.4 million square feet of positive absorption has been recorded.
Midtown South availability has fared the best during this time period, with a 140-basis-point decline to 7.7 percent. The availability rate was up and down throughout 2013 but has consistently dropped over the last four months. In the first two months of this year, there has been more than 2.8 million square feet leased in Midtown South, which has propelled the availability rate to its current level.
The Midtown overall availability rate decrease—100 basis points from a year ago to 11.0 percent—is not far behind Midtown South. Midtown availability actually reached 10.8 percent at the end of 2013, but with the addition of two new big blocks of space to the market, availability bumped back up 20 basis points through February of this year.
Downtown posted the lowest decline in availability from 12 months ago out of the three markets. At 12.7 percent, Downtown’s availability rate is 90 basis points lower than it was in February 2013. Class B space fueled this descent in availability, with a 230-basis-point drop to 9.7 percent.
Regardless of how you slice the data, the available space throughout Manhattan is heading in the right direction.