Stockholm Chamber of Commerce - Is The Office-Shortage The New Housing-Shortage?

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Housing Market

Is The Office-Shortage The New Housing-Shortage?

The Stockholm Chamber of Commerce have conducted an interview with 200 businesses with more than 10 employees with offices within the inner city’s most central locations. The responses clearly show that there is in fact an office-shortage affecting businesses possibilities to grow, recruit, and develop.

- There is a great pressure and Stockholm is hot and interesting for businesses. At the same time problems arise when focus is solely directed on housing and not enough space is allocated to office space, Daniella Waldfogel, public affairs expert, says.

Among the businesses interviewed many view the shortage of office space as the most serious obstacle to growth. On top of this, the office-space that exists within the capital’s most central locations the prices are premium, in fact, the highest in the EU, if London is excluded due to Brexit.

One out of three businesses responded in the report that they will have grown out of the office-space within three years. Among those that are active within IT and communications, almost half of the respondents say that they will not have enough space in their current offices.

About a tenth of businesses have refrained from recruiting due to the shortage at the workplace.

- For many businesses, the choice is not between the inner city of Stockholm or the suburbs, but between the inner city of Stockholm or, for example, Amsterdam, Berlin or Copenhagen. That is why it is crucial that the question is discussed thoroughly and not just left to chance, Daniella Waldfogel says.

From the report it is revealed that 15 percent of all businesses claim that they are flexible and could imagine moving their place of business to other central locations in Europe.

- I think it shows that the office-shortage can lead to problems if it is not handled and the problems that businesses express are dealt with. Stockholm must be able to compete both in availability of office-space and at reasonable prices, Daniella Waldfogel continues.

The Chamber proposes following actions:

  1. Expand the Central Business District (CBD) in an organic way. Create more value in the areas just outside the core so that they become dynamic and interesting.
  2. Consider developing a so called second CBD in the periphery.
  3. Use the space within the CBD at its highest capacity by, for example construction buildings on top of other buildings as far as it is possible. Vertically expand more buildings in a one to three story fashion where it is suitable.
  4. Hasten the construction planning of the decking at the station area which will provide up to 10 000 new office-spaces. These created jobs will in turn create thousands in the regional economy.
  5. Overhaul which government agencies are crucial to reside within the capital’s most central locations, and which government agencies are not.

Read the summary of the report here.