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Is Via Carpatia a chance for eastern Poland?

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Via Carpatia is a long-awaited EU transport route that is expected to stimulate the economies of Eastern Europe, from the Baltic Sea to the Aegean Sea. In Poland, it will run across the following voivodeships: Podlaskie, Warmia-Masuria, Masovia, Lubelskie and Subcarpathia, along the expressways S61, S16 and S19, from Klaipėda and Kaunas in Lithuania, through Białystok, Lublin and Rzeszów in Poland, Košice in Slovakia, Debrecen in Hungary, to Romania, Bulgaria and Greece. The Polish section of the route will comprise just under 700 km. The S19 and S8 expressways of Via Carpatia in the Podlaskie region will connect Southern Europe and Scandinavia. Investments in expressways linking cities in eastern Poland will underpin further growth of Białystok, Lublin and Rzeszów. Investor confidence in these markets is strong. Logistics projects developed, for example, in Lublin since 2015 have delivered approximately 130,000 sq m of leasable warehouse space. Via Carpatia provides a link for the core cities of eastern Poland, which is attracting growing investor interest.

Urszula Duval Rasmussen, Senior Negotiator, Industrial and Logistics Agency, Cushman & Wakefield

The modern industrial and warehouse stock in eastern Poland stands at 400,000 sq m and the bulk of it is concentrated in two cities: Rzeszów and Lublin. Most of this space is available across new schemes – approximately 265,000 sq m was developed in the last three years in projects completed by Panattoni, MLP, Goodman, CLM and Waimea Group. New projects will soon be delivered in Kielce and Białystok, which will gain a quick road link with Warsaw, Poland’s largest logistics market, through the S7 and S8 expressways.

Despite the growing interest in eastern Poland, occupier demand for logistics space continues to focus on small-sized transactions of up to 3,000 sq m. This trend, however, is likely to reverse following major projects incorporating this region into a modern international transport network, including the completion of Via Carpatia.

Adrian Semaan, Consultant, Industrial & Logistics Agency, Cushman & Wakefield

Via Carpatia will significantly strengthen the image of eastern Poland in the eyes of investors, particularly those operating in the logistics and warehouse sector. Not only will it improve transportation between countries to the north and south of Poland’s borders, but it will also shorten journey times between cities, including Rzeszów, Lublin and Białystok. The Polish section of the route is expected to be completed in 2024. As some lands in priority locations – according to investors – will probably be developed by that time, sites along Via Carpatia are likely to become compelling alternatives going forward.

Kamil Żach, Land Specialist, Industrial and Logistics Agency, Cushman & Wakefield