Office tenants in Warsaw’s Służewiec district have been losing sleep over the redevelopment of Marynarska and Domaniewska streets for several months. This has exacerbated the congestion on the streets in and around Mokotów. The journey time has increased on the already congested streets leading to office buildings in the area. As a result, some tenants have decided to relocate to other parts of the capital city due to the worsening traffic conditions.
In 2016, Warsaw’s total office stock topped 5 million sq m. The capital’s vacancy rate has been gradually rising since mid-2011 despite developer confidence. At year-end 2016 the vacancy in Warsaw accounted for 14.2%. The market conditions are currently favourable for tenants who can demand various concessions such as office fit-out contributions or lower rents. Key factors in building selection include location features such as access to public transport, parking availability, amenities and proximity to green areas.
The eastern part of the Wola district and Jerozolimskie Avenues are benefiting from this. Some cost sensitive tenants focused on financial terms are seeking to take full advantage of their bargaining power to renegotiate better lease conditions, supported by weaker demand for office space in the Mokotów-Służewiec area and the risk of more occupiers vacating offices there. As a result, in addition to offering favourable financial terms, landlords increasingly undertake to provide more amenities for tenants’ well-being or to refurbish common areas, including reception desks. Despite temporary problems, Mokotów-Służewiec remains an alternative business district to the capital’s city centre. Its key assets are the proximity of the airport and the Galeria Mokotów shopping centre. In addition to typical office building facilities such as canteens and kiosks, other amenities include an outdoor cinema, food trucks and chill-out zones for tenants. Służewiec also offers a number of new residential buildings, frequently with a wide range of retail operators.
Several infrastructure projects are currently underway to improve traffic conditions in this part of Warsaw, including the redevelopment of Marynarska and Postępu streets, and the planned construction of a road to link Suwak and Cybernetyki streets. The cycling infrastructure has also been developed. This includes more stations of the Veturilo rental bike system, more bike lanes and bicycle parking facilities in nearby office buildings. Tenants in the Służewiec district also have access to car sharing services provided by 4Mobility. Other alternatives to car travel include the city railway line with PKP Służewiec railway station near Domaniewska and Postępu streets, and a shuttle bus taking employees to and from a nearby metro station at designated times. The completion of the redevelopment of Marynarska and Domaniewska streets is expected to significantly ease the congestion in this part of Warsaw. Therefore, remaining in Warsaw’s “Mordor” may turn out to be an excellent business decision for some tenants in the longer term.
Monika Sieradzan, Senior Consultant, Office Agency of Cushman & Wakefield