Wellington Retail Report | Second Half 2020

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  • Vacant space in the CBD rose to over 7,000 sq m in the June quarter reflecting a vacancy rate of 6.7% compared to the 4.1% recorded in the December quarter last year. The increase was largely influenced by a small number of larger units which have become available in the Willis Street precinct.
  • Retail development in Wellington remains muted with a majority of the pipeline comprising small ground floor retail spaces in residential projects or offices. This coupled with an increasing amount of stock being removed for refurbishment has seen a reduction in total floor space from 112,530 sq m to 111,618 sq m in the latest survey.
  • Approximately 1,100 sq m of prime retail space will be added to the Cuba precinct in the coming months when refurbishment works on the ex-farmers site completes. Telecommunications provider Spark and apparel retailer Glassons have committed to tenancies.
  • Investor interest in large format retailing and supermarket-type stores has been heightened by their defensive investment asset characteristics. For example, 98-100 Abel Smith Road, Te Aro tenanted by Liqourland recently transacted for $6.0 million representing an approximate initial yield of 5.75% to a local private investor.
  • COVID-19 enforced lockdowns have highlighted the importance to retailers of having a strong online presence. The greater familiarity with online shopping is accelerating change within the retail sector such as the  proposed development by Countdown of a new dedicated ‘eStore’ in Wellington following the success of the first concept store in Auckland.

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Wellington Retail Report | Second Half 2020

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Tim Bowden

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Tim Bowden joined the Sales and Leasing team at Colliers International Wellington in April 2017. He specialises in Sales and Leasing in the Southern and Eastern suburbs of Wellington.

He first started with Colliers in 2013 acting as lease manager across the Land Information New Zealand contract before moving within Colliers to a lease advisory position with Z Energy. After managing Z’s nationwide retail portfolio Tim decided to transfer his property experience to the role of Sales and Leasing Broker in the Wellington market.

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Richard began his career with commercial leasing and later sales and spent three years with central London property firm Gooch & Wagstaff. Between his expertise, knowledge base and the networks he maintains, he prides himself on being one of Wellington’s best informed brokers.

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