More New Office Tenants Call Pittsburgh Home

Pittsburgh led the nation during 2009 in the amount of office space leased or occupied by new tenants, said national commercial real estate company Grubb & Ellis during its Commercial Real Estate Forecast Update conference. The region did remarkably well compared with other markets, filling 693,276 square feet of office space--equal to about 40 football fields. This helped reduce Pittsburgh’s office vacancy rate from 16 percent to 15 percent last year as 2 million square feet went dark in other Pennsylvania regions.

Relocations into Pittsburgh properties with more than 500,000 square feet by Westinghouse Electric Co. and Dick’s Sporting Goods fueled the region’s overall improvement. Grubb & Ellis predicts that Class A rental rates in the Downtown area will increase from $21.75 per square foot to $22.75 per square foot this year, and suburban office rates could increase from $20.40 per square foot to $20.85 per square.