Energy companies dump office space onto Fort Worth marketEnergy companies dump office space onto Fort Worth markethttps://www.recenter.tamu.edu/news/newstalk-texas/?Item=118502016-01-28T06:00:00Z2016-01-28T18:00:00Z

​​​FORT WORTH - Not since the Great Recession has downtown Fort Worth seen so much office space available for sublease, and we have the plunge in oil prices to thank for that.

“There have been a number of oil and gas companies that have put sublease space on the market, especially downtown,” said Todd Burnette, managing director of the Fort Worth office of JLL commercial brokerage.

"There’s about 150,000 sf available downtown today. Look for as much as another 100,000 sf to hit the market this year.”

Companies began offering space for sublease about six months ago, including four floors in the 777 Main office tower by energy firm FTS International.

Five years ago, energy companies gave a boost to the central business district, leasing a good deal of vacant space, market reports showed. 

Now, the vacant space equates to 34 full floors in downtown office buildings, with another six floors likely to be empty by the end of the year. Companies have either moved out or downsized in the wake of the lower oil prices.

But Fort Worth should be fine because the city has done many things in the last 25 years to change its dependence on the oil and natural gas industry, Burnette said.

Energy jobs account for 2.2 percent of all jobs in Fort Worth, compared to Midland, where energy jobs account for 25 percent of its job base.

Fort Worth had 17,915 energy jobs in 2Q 2015, the latest figure available, down 13.4 percent from the 2Q 2014 with 20,679 jobs.

Population and job growth will continue to drive retail and multifamily development.

Last year, commercial construction permits totaled 16.4 million sf of space and residential permits totaled 10.7 million sf.

Permits issued in 2014 totaled 11,131 and carried $2 billion in value, compared to 11,320 permits issued and with a $2.3 billion value in 2015.

Fort Worth Star-Telegram
Dallas-Fort Worth-Arlington

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