With costs rising and land at a premium, folks are getting creative

If you want to understand the latest trends in Salt Lake City office spaces, look at some of the effects of a sizzling economy.

Utah could gain as many as 50,000 jobs this year — and workers need workplaces. Salt Lake County is expected to absorb up to a million square feet of new office digs, on par with its growth trajectory in recent years.

Utah County will add about 1.5 million square feet, if the latest projections are a clue, with rapid office growth driven by the magnet of Silicon Slopes as a tech hub and the county’s relative edge over its neighbor to the north in terms of available land and large office projects already in the pipeline.

But top real estate brokers who specialize in office spaces say Utah’s capital city is under intense demand as a place to work, with a premium — thanks to TRAX — on locations in the central business district. That’s true of startup companies, existing firms looking to grow, or corporate giants like Amazon, Facebook and Goldman Sachs, all expanding in the Beehive State.

“People are excited to move here and be a part of our downtown area,” says Eric Smith, senior vice president and office market specialist with CBRE, an international commercial real estate firm with offices in Salt Lake City.

Another key factor for the look and mix of Salt Lake City offices is the jobless rate. In Utah, that’s hovering at a near-record low of 3 percent — close to full employment.

The more competition for top talent heats up — particularly in knowledge-based sectors of the economy — the more important it is to fashion workspaces with architectural and design appeal, along with higher-end finishes and plenty of amenities, according to the experts.

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The Salt Lake Tribune Mon, 11/05/2018 - 21:24