Cracow, it is happening

Excon office block
Cultural capital, Wawel, St. Mary's Trumpet Call, university campus, taste of Cracovian bubilks... What else can be associated with Cracow? Office real estate is what should come into mind.

Offices, offices everywhere...

Cracow has the most office space among cities in the region. In whole country only Warsaw has more. As Knight Frank states, in 3rd quarter of 2012 supply of the office space in Cracow excedeed 500 000 m2. New offices build from July to September (in 2012) given 28 700 m2 available for lease and 20 600 m2 of office space was under construcition. The amount of leased space in 1st three quarters of 2012 exceeded amount reached in 2011.

Frank Knight data shows, that all transactions concerning commercial real estate in 3rd quarter of 2012 in Cracow reached 15 700 m2. It is clearly visible that previous quarters were 50% better but experst say, current "stagnation" is only contemporary. On the market: 3% of transactions were contracts, 4% were expansions of office space and 14% were renegotiations and pre-let contracts.

Experts from Knight Frank states, that at the and of September 2012 weighted mean of rent height in Cracow was 13,5 euro/m2 a month. It means 0,1 euro growth in comparison to previous quarter. Highest prices are seen among A class office space ranging from 15 to 17 euro/m2 a month. B class office space: 10,5 - 15 euro/m2 a month.

Worth noting is the fact, that 6,7% of offices are not leased, which is a rise from 5,3% of the whole in 2nd quarter of the 2012. Additionally, 87% of available office space was located beyond the city centre.

Why Cracow?

What is so appealing, for investors, in Cracow? Mainly, it is a leading science and research centre in Poland. Many academic hubs and banks' legal addresses are here. Additional assets are, specific demographic structore of the city and its geographic situation - centre of the whole europe. 

In Cracow business clusters (cooperation of science centres, business and local government) are clearly visible. Companies can be aid due to Special Economic Zone project, which will be extended in 2013 by 90 ha. As Krystyna Sadowska, director of promotion and marketing of Cracow Technology Park, stated - Importance of Special Economic Zones should be noted, they were created in academic hubs, Cracow Technology Park or Pomeranian Special Economic Zone became centres of modernity. They point the ways of economic growth of their region. Rapid growth of the BPO sector in Cracow cannot be unseen. Cracow, has now one of the biggest concentration of BPO sector in the country.

Notable trend seen in Cracow for about a year is "balanced building". It is reflected by constantly increasing supply of office space certified by LEED or BREEAM and are granted attestation of European Comission - Green Building. The last certificate is most important for foreign investors, who have in mind not only quality of investment but also eco-frendliness and energy eficiency. Home companies are also becoming increasingly fond of eco-friendly Office blocks.

Many choices

According to CBRE data, in Cracow, in first 3 quarters of 2012 more office space was leased than in whole 2011. This indicates high degree of demand for office space which results in many new investments. It would be impractical to describe them all in a single article, but the most  curious ones will be characterized.

On Kamienna street Fronton office block was erected. It offers 5 720 m2 of space and is situated in proximity of Galeria Krakowska, which means great localization. Additionally, interior was build in Open Space standard, meaning it let leaser to arrange interior as needed.

In January 2012 office block on Jasnogórska 11, in Krowodrza district, was finished. It features 8 800 m2 of space and approximately 300 parking spots. Object has Open Space interior as well.

Podgórze district also has building, Roan invested in an office block on Dekerta 18 street, near Diamant Plaza. The block has 4 floors and 1 800 m2 of energy efficient space.

Southern Cracow has two new interesting investments, namely: Orange Office Park and  Enterprise Park, which is to be given BREEAM certificate. The first one is a complex of 3 office buildings: Amsterdam (11 230 m2), Rotterdam (7 500 m2) and Den Hague (6 500 m2). On Aleja Powstańców Wielkopolskich Enterprise Park is under construction, it also features 3 buildings: A, B, C. These buildings will be eco-friendly, highly energy efficient and ergonomic.

Investment of Expres-Konkurent is also worth noting, Excon office block located near newly build section of motorway A4. The building offers 4 655 m2 of space and was finished in 3rd quarter of 2012. Investor can be quite happy, by the end of 2012 only 950 m2 are left for lease.

On Kordylewskiego street modern office block Platinum was build. Bryksy company's investment has 1 540 m2 and 28 parking spots in an underground garage. There is also special parking for bicycles.

Cracow has also to offer some office blocks that were build earlier. These blocks offer high class interiors, for example: Centrum Administracyjne Teva on Mogilska street or Centrum Biznesu i Innowacji Copernicus on aleja Jana Pawła II.

What next?

Cracow is starting to be main business centre in the region. More and more companies locate their establishments here thanks to variety of office space offers. Owing to that, future will be marked with investments.

For example:  Alma Tower, near Rondo (Roudabout) Młyńskie, funded by UBM AG is to offer 10 000 m2 of LEED certified space. Investor analysed Cracovian market and decided to build a green office block. As much as 50% of space will be Alma company's, this is how project has got its name.

Iteresting project is construction of new building in Quattro Business Park. Building C is to be enegy efficient and is build of eco-friendly materials, building will be BREEAM certified. Investor, BUMA company, realises its building is targeted into international companies and  building must not be inferior to these in London, Paris or Berlin. 

Skanska is also investing in Cracow in  Kapelanka 42 complex, that is: two A class office blocks of combined space reaching 30 000 m2. These office blocks are true to balanced building principle and are to be LEED certified.

Very interesting investment is Capital High, located in a South-West part of Cracow. Inspiration to the projects are business districts of Paris, London, Vienna, Frankfurt and Moscow. They are multi-functional and all of office, commerce, and housing space are connected harmonicly.

Contemporal trend in construction industry concerning office buildings is use of eco-friendly materials and making buildings energy efficient. Cracow in particular is appealing for invoestors from technologies industry, telecommunication and BPO. It is in Cracow where ASPIRE was funded, it is the first (in Poland) association of companies from modern business services sector. One can clearly see that Cracow of the future is a city, where developing demand meets adequate supply.

Translated by Sebastian Kolbusz

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