Amazon’s expansion, including a single 2.3 million sq ft letting at Panattoni Park in Swindon, accounted for one-third of all 2020 take-up so far, a total of 11.5 million sq ft.
The data from Cushman & Wakefield comes as Knight Frank released predictions that e-commerce will stimulate demand for up to 92 million sq ft of new UK warehouse space in the next three years.
Analysis from Knight Frank shows every billion pounds of online spend requires 1.36M SF of new logistics floorspace.
The Knight Frank analysis suggested that the spike in online sales in 2020 alone will create demand for an additional 30 million sq ft of logistics space, rising to a total of 92 million sq ft by 2024 by which time online sales will account for 32% of UK retail spend. The supermarket sector is tipped for the sharpest growth and will create demand for 7.1 million sq ft of new floorspace.
Brokers are warning that rents are likely to rise, particularly around London and Manchester.
“Speculative development has slowed, which means this imbalance could persist. There are signs that prime rental growth could return as a result, particularly for mid-box units,” Cushman & Wakefield Head of UK Logistics Richard Evans said.
“Supply is already very constrained in and around London and major cities, with the availability of land a major challenge for developers. As online sales accelerate, we may see new industrial formats emerge as supply chains adapt,” Knight Frank Head of Logistics Charles Binks said.