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‘Last mile’ sheds in demand as online deliveries rise

Galabank business park

Galabank: large industrial units are in demand

Property agents are expecting a rise in demand for larger ‘last mile’ industrial units as the shift to online logistics continues.

Industrial property take-up overall in Scotland last year was on par with 2019, but with significantly fewer deals (320 against 566 in 2019), according to CBRE Scotland.

The average transaction size was up from 9,500 sq ft to more than 17,000 sq ft, reflecting occupiers’ drive for larger properties in response to supply chain challenges emanating from the Covid pandemic.

David Reid, associate director in the firm’s industrial & logistics team, said: “With Covid accelerating online demand for retail, we also predict increased demand for last mile logistics properties as retailers seek to move closer to their customers. 

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“This strong demand, coupled with a shortage of available land, should result in funding being made available for speculative development.  In addition, we expect occupiers to increasingly focus their efforts on reducing their carbon footprint.”

In Glasgow, the largest market in Scotland accounting for approximately 65 of all transactions during 2020, take-up totalled 3.56m sq ft, up 10% on 2019. 

Take-up in the Edinburgh market was 1.17m sq ft in 2020, down 21% on 2019.

The Aberdeen market saw activity growing for the fourth year in a row, despite the wider economic challenges as a result of both the pandemic and the oil price drop. Take-up for 2020 totalled 720,780 sq ft, up 1% from 2019.

Waverley contract

Network Rail has appointed Mott MacDonald as the design contractor for the makeover of Edinburgh Waverley rail station.

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A96 upgrading

Scottish Ministers have given the go-ahead for the dualling 19 miles of the A96 between Inverness and Nairn.

Transport Secretary Michael Matheson said: “We are continuing to progress our ambitious plans to dual the A96 between Inverness and Aberdeen, delivering around 88 miles of upgraded road.

“Subject to there being no challenge to Made Orders this would complete the statutory process for the scheme and allow us to acquire land required to build the scheme.

“This huge milestone for the programme leads the way for other sections of the route to follow as we continue to advance the detailed development and assessment of the preferred options for the Hardmuir to Fochabers and East of Huntly to Aberdeen schemes.”

Co-Lab due to open

Co-Lab, a collaborative workspace, has been created at the Enterprise Centre on Moorfield Group’s Energy & Innovation Parks in Bridge of Don.

Cherry Paton, parks manager said: “The Co-lab has been designed to cater to start-up businesses that are looking to increase their available office space and have a touchdown base.”



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