The long-term effects of the pandemic continue to impact Metro Clark’s office market during the first half of 2021, KMC Research data showed.
In its latest report, the firm reported a 23.5% vacancy rate or almost three times of its previous record of 8.5% in 4Q/2020. Pre-termination and non-renewals were identified as the main factors for this spike in vacancy, as majority of occupiers in the business district implement remote work for their business operations in Central Luzon. High vacancy rates were also influenced by the introduction of 15,000 sq m of office space in the CBD, which came online during the time period.
Average rents in Metro Clark also declined by 3.7% YoY in 2Q/2021 to PHP 521.4 per sq m / month. With the influx of new supply in the coming periods alongside lackluster leasing activity, rents are anticipated to remain under downward pressure in the short- to midterm.
PNR Clark to Revive Clark’s Economy
Meanwhile, more infrastructure and transport projects that connect and lead to Clark are expected to be completed and inaugurated. In a statement, Department of Transportation (DOTr) Secretary Art Tugade vouched for the anticipated project’s impact on reviving the economy and employment in Central Luzon.
“The DOTr, in all of its projects, has always aimed to revitalize the country’s economy. A transport infrastructure project like the NSCR will spur economic growth in Central Luzon, particularly the provinces of Bulacan and Pampanga,” Tugade said.
The PNR Clark Phase 2 is a 53 kilometer-rail line under the NSCR that will connect Malolos, Bulacan to Clark, Pampanga. It is part of the massive 147-km NSCR line, which will have 35 stations, and shall operate 464 train cars, with 58 8-car train sets configuration.