Logistics keeps lid on industrial vacancy

Brisbane is currently enjoying relatively low vacancy rates in industrial property, thanks to growth in the logistics sector.

The Property Council of Australia’s Brisbane Industrial Vacancy Report, released today, has found an average vacancy rate of 4.5% of properties and 3.2% of floorspace across the four study areas.

The report, which measures vacancy in industrial property greater than 3,000 sqm, has revealed that the Logan Motorway Corridor is the best performing industrial precinct in Brisbane with only 1.3% of floorspace vacant.

Brisbane North and Brisbane South West were also found to be performing well with 3.4% and 2.2% of available floorspace vacant, respectively.

While the Australian Trade Coast (ATC) precinct recorded the highest vacancy rate of 6%, since the 31 March reporting date three large facilities have been absorbed totaling nearly 53,000sqm. If recorded today, the vacancy rate at ATC would be approximately 4.5%, more in line with the other Brisbane precincts.

Queensland Executive Director of the Property Council, Chris Mountford, said the report’s findings reflect ever-increasing activity in the warehouse and freight distribution sector.

“A common theme across these study areas is the dominance of warehousing and freight distribution in the industrial sector in Brisbane and the virtual absence of traditional heavy manufacturing,” Mr Mountford said.

Brisbane City Council’s ‘General Industry C’ zone, which aims to protect sites for heavy industrial uses, accounts for a considerable proportion of industrial zoned land in Brisbane. With market forces no longer demanding these uses the property industry is seeking greater flexibility within the planning scheme to cater for emerging industry trends.

“General Industry C zone places a significant hurdle in front of the redevelopment of older industrial buildings for new tenants,” Mr Mountford said.

“The Property Council is urging Brisbane City Council to reconsider what types of industrial development are acceptable in the General Industry C zone, with a view of allowing greater flexibility in acceptable uses.”