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One-half of Downtown Office Space Built in Last 7 Years

October 18, 1987

Half of downtown's office space has been built during the past seven years, according to a survey by the brokerage firm, Merritt Real Estate Group.

The 26 buildings constructed during this decade contain 12,342,846 square feet, which is almost equal to the 14,551,292 square feet in the 44 built from 1915 to 1979.

Fred Merritt, president of the firm, said that about twice as much space has been built in the seven years of the 1980s as in the 10 years of the 1970s.

Downtown has 4,956,293 square feet of vacant space, giving it a vacancy rate of 18% according to the survey.

Merritt said the survey indicated vacancy rates are lowest, 11%, in the 11 structures built in the 1970s, while the highest vacancy rate is 30%, in the 19 built before World War II. Vacancy rates in the 1980 buildings are about 20%.

Merritt said that he expected vacancies from now to year-end would be reduced by as much as 4% as a result of commitments by banks, law firms and other companies, especially those in financial services.

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