New Haven-Fairfield County Office Investment Forecast
Metro Absorption Holds Positive Through the Pandemic;
Concessions Create Opportunities for Tenants to Enter
Market records job growth; more positives on the horizon. After suffering an acute drop in employment early in the health crisis, the metro observed gains in office-using sectors last year, breaking a five-year-long decline in the segment's headcount. While current momentum could subside, recent corporate relocations should help maintain downward pressure on vacancy. Swiss tobacco giant Philip Morris announced a move last year from its current Manhattan headquarters to an innovation center in Stamford's CBD, coinciding with an intra-market move to the same area by clean energy provider Altus Power. In addition, shifting tenant preferences to favor facilities in suburbs with urban-like amenities such as walkability and access to mass transit set Fairfield County submarkets in the sights of companies seeking to trade higher-cost New York City leases for space within commuting distance. New Haven's office stock also benefits from its proximity to Yale's Main Campus and Medical Center, allowing the eastern half of the market to take advantage of the nationwide life sciences boom. Next year's moderate supply pipeline is primarily in or adjacent to New Haven County, putting some upward pressure on availability here, but mitigating headwinds in western Fairfield County.