Through midyear 2016, Manhattan new leasing activity totaled just over 13.6 million square feet, a healthy number despite being down 11.2 percent compared with the first half of 2015. However, lease renewals are up 46 percent this year, pushing overall leasing activity 1 percent higher than one year ago, totaling almost 19.6 million square feet of leasing. Over 5.9 million square feet of lease renewals were signed in the first half of 2016, surpassing all of 2015 by 400,000 square feet, making 2016 the year of the renewal!
Midtown was the only major market with a year-over-year decline in new leases, as only 8.6 million square feet was leased, an 18.7 percent decline. Lease renewals jumped 11 percent totaling 3.9 million square feet, accounting for 31.3 percent of total leasing this year. With overall leasing activity at 12.5 million square feet, it is still off from last year, down 11.2 percent.
Midtown South has been a slight increase in new leases this year, up 3.1 percent from one year ago with 2.9 million square feet leased. Class A space had a 70.2 percent increase in new leases signed compared to midyear 2015, as 949,781 square feet was completed. Lease renewals are up significantly over the past year accounting for 18.2 percent of total leasing, as 650,952 square feet was renewed versus only 140,855 square feet by midyear 2015. Overall leasing is up 20.1 percent year-over-year, as over 3.5 million square feet was leased and renewed.
Downtown had the largest increase in new leasing activity, up 7.8 percent compared with one year ago, as 2.1 million square feet were leased. Leases renewals have totaled almost 1.4 million square feet this year, accounting for 39.7 percent of overall leasing, and up from only 415,132 square feet from one year ago. The four largest lease renewals account for 77.5 percent of the Downtown renewal activity so far this year. Overall leasing is up 47.6 percent year-over-year, with 3.5 million square feet of total activity