2 December 2021
The Property Council’s latest office occupancy data shows activity in the Brisbane CBD is on the rise, with occupancy increasing in November to 63 per cent of pre-COVID levels, up from 57 per cent in October.
The monthly survey of office owners has demonstrated the positive impact of the mask mandate ending and health restrictions easing. While encouraged by the increase in numbers, the city’s property industry reinforces there is more to be done to ensure occupancy returns to pre-COVID levels.
Queensland Executive Director of the Property Council, Jen Williams, acknowledged the uptick in occupancy, while stressing the importance of shifting the habits that have set in over the past 18 months.
“Undoubtedly, the pandemic has fast-tracked trends in workplace flexibility, with office workers now afforded a greater choice in where and how they work,” Ms Williams said.
“Flow-on impacts from the pandemic have seen less workers and visitors in the CBD, along with fewer people utilising public transport.
“Continuing an upward trend in CBD activity will require a collective effort from all levels of government and the private sector to promote the importance of restoring connectivity and collaboration in the workplace.
“Brisbane can’t afford to lose the economic benefits that a vibrant city centre brings, especially as we embark on the 11-year runway to the 2032 Brisbane Olympic and Paralympic Games.
“With vaccination rates increasing and the state set to open up to interstate and international tourists and students, there are positive signs for the festive season.
“To help maintain this momentum, in the new year, the Property Council will again work with city stakeholders on a campaign to draw more people into the CBD.
“Still in its early stages of planning, Summer in the City will call on employers and employees to use the new year as an opportunity to reset and make a concerted effort to bring their teams back together in the workplace.
“Delivered in partnership with private and government stakeholders, Summer in the City will provide the perfect opportunity to recapture the camaraderie and connection of the workplace, lost by many throughout the pandemic.”