By Cameron Williams, Director of Research, SVN International Corp.
Downtown office vacancies continue to climb, with a significant portion of the workforce operating remotely. The trend away from traditional office usage is reflected in a projection that office conversion projects are expected to more than double, driven by incentives from state and local governments.
This shift comes as the conventional five-day office workweek is rendered obsolete, prompting a search for alternative uses for empty office spaces. While the White House has proposed a $35 billion initiative to transform these underutilized spaces into residential housing, aiming to create over 170,000 units, the question remains whether this approach is viable.
Beyond residential conversion, innovative uses for this space are being considered, from multifamily housing to vertical farming and medical/life science facilities, as we rethink how best to utilize the evolving urban fabric.