Philadelphia Retail Market Report
Availability Shrinks Across Greater Philadelphia,
Center City Retail Outlook Improves
Urban zones tighten, Center City foot traffic on the rise. Retail leasing reached its most fervent pace since the onset of the health crisis during the past 12 months ended in June. During this span, nearly 2.7 million square feet were absorbed on a net basis, highlighted by retailers committing to space in outlying residential neighborhoods of Philadelphia proper, where foot traffic has been consistent since 2020. In University City and Philadelphia's outermost urban submarkets, availability was tighter than pre-pandemic norms at the onset of July. Recovery is also proceeding in the core and adjacent zones. Comcast, one of the city's largest employers, called 8,000 workers back to Center City offices in September, aiding restaurants and shops dependent on weekday patrons. Additionally, foot traffic from neighborhood residents is 17 percent above 2019 levels, helping to close the gap as office usage continues to improve.