by Natalie Vincent Mon 18 June 2018, 5:23 pm
Following a successful launch of eight-storey office development Futureworks in Slough on 14 June, 3Fox International spoke to two property insiders about their views on where the next commercial lettings hotspots will be.
Will Foster, partner at estate consultant Knight Frank, outlined reasons for the growing commercial popularity of towns similar to Slough: "What we're seeing in the office market in the south-east is a number of what would be considered in some senses to be the 'un-lovelier' towns such as Croydon, Redhill, Woking and Watford, seeing a much greater performance and better results in attracting occupiers and therefore improving rents, than some of the towns that are generally considered to be prettier and popular to live in.
"The reason for that is, it's increasingly becoming a function of accessibility by public transport at speed, which is obviously available in Slough, Croydon, Watford and Redhill; and secondly the amenity provision and the things revolving around the typical working day that demands affordable places to eat, coffee shops, a gym and good high street shopping.
"Those towns are generally seeing fantastic rental growth because of the occupiers' desire to locate where staff get their boxes ticked.'
Philip Papenfus of chartered surveyor Dohertybaines said that a town's public image is integral to success: "The thing to overcome is the [Slough's] image problem, as it has such a bad image, and I think schemes like this one, and what the council's been doing around the station – the library and bus station and so forth – it's all coming together and actually, I think the future's pretty bright for Slough."
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