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The Warsaw Voice » Regional Voice » April 28, 2011
The Lower Silesia Voice
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Making the Most of Opportunities
April 28, 2011   
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Is Lower Silesia province taking full advantage of opportunities presented by Poland’s EU entry and the upcoming Euro 2012 soccer championships to develop its commercial real estate market?

The boom of 2006-2008 was followed by two lean years, 2009 and 2010, and now the market’s growth still seems somewhat restrained even though the crisis is believed to have ended.

The best way to see how rapidly our regional market has developed is to compare data for some of Poland’s most buoyant cities in the last six years. In 2004, modern office stock in Wroc³aw totaled 150,000 square meters, while in Cracow the figure was around 220,000 sq m and in Poznań 140,000 sq m. At the end of last year, Wroc³aw had 390,000 sq m of modern office space, 160 percent more than six years earlier, a faster expansion than in other regional cities. Cracow had 420,000 sq m, and Poznań 250,000 sq m. This means that modern office stock in both Cracow and Poznań has expanded by around 90 percent over the past six years.

The vacancy rate in Wroc³aw is estimated at 5.4-7 percent, which shows that developers have reached a mature stage where they adapt supply to the market situation. Data for this year confirms that this is the case. Around 55,000 sq m of office space is currently under construction in the city, with 16,000 sq m already rented out.

When it comes to the availability of retail space in regional cities, Wroc³aw is among the leaders as well, boasting a gross leasable area (GLA) of around 840 sq m per 1,000 inhabitants. We are behind Poznań, but ahead of Cracow.

Four of Poland’s 14 special economic zones operate in Lower Silesia. These are the Wa³brzych, Legnica, Kamienna Góra and Tarnobrzeg special economic zones. Back in 2006, the Wa³brzych, Legnica and Kamienna Góra zones created 23,200 jobs and attracted zl.9.1 billion worth of investment between them. By the end of last year, investment in these zones grew to zl.20.3 billion and employment exceeded 52,000. The figures mean that both investment and employment rose by over 110 percent during this period in what was the highest figure nationwide.

All this shows that Lower Silesia has never missed an opportunity so far and the city of Wroc³aw aspires to become the second most attractive destination for those investing in commercial real estate in Poland, after Warsaw.
Jerzy Hendrich, MRICS
Commercial Property Investment
For further information go to www.cpi.wroclaw.pl
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