Online retail has driven the take-up of UK big box warehouse floor space to a new high.
Total take-up in 2015 topped 24.1m sq ft, 10 per cent up on the long-term average. The figures, from surveyors Savills, show more than 100 big box deals for warehouses larger than 100,000 sq ft. The overall total is 9.5 per cent above the long-term average of 22m sq ft.
The strongest regions were the North West, recording 4.56m sq ft (compared to a long-term average of 3.4m sq ft), thanks to monster deals including the decision by Exertis to take 543,000 sq ft of space at Burnley Bridge Business Park.
The East Midlands remains the most active market with 4.9m sq ft of transactions taking place last year. Savills say the total supply of warehouse space across the UK also increased last year, rising 11 per cent to 34m sq ft. Speculative development accounted for just 3.3m sq ft. Design-and-build deals accounted for 44 per cent of new-build take-up.
Another 7.1m sq ft of specuilative development is due for completion in 2016. Major schemes in the pipeline include 358,000 sq ft (33,259 sq m) at Prologis Park Dunstable and 357,000 sq ft (33,166 sq m) at Logistics North in Bolton.