Oakland Office Market Report
Oakland’s Infrastructure and Regional Affordability
Provide Long-Term Optimism in the Office Sector
Encouraging signs emerge. Average weekday ridership on BART improved by nearly 20 percent year-over-year in March, narrowing the gap between pre- and post-pandemic commuter volumes in the East Bay. Also, PG&E’s headquarter lease in the CBD officially commenced in the first quarter, and firms like ArsenalBio, Eko Health, Nisum and Advanced Marine Technologies each signed new deals during this span. Nevertheless, recent activity has been overshadowed by large blocks of sublease space hitting the market, as the original lease holders seek cost-saving options. Vacancy rose to 17.5 percent in March as a result, the highest rate recorded in more than 15 years, and market conditions will likely continue to soften in the near-term. However, the metro’s regional affordability, steady population growth projections, and diverse inventory of product that caters to life sciences, medical and traditional office tenants should help stabilize space demand once economic conditions normalize.