Nexsen Pruet makes uptown office move

April 26, 2010by trippcommercial0

Law firm Nexsen Pruet is relocating its local office to the Carillon building uptown, citing changing lease rates as the primary driver for the move.

About 15 lawyers and staffers at the firm will move into 13,400 square feet on the 15th floor of the building at the corner of Trade and Poplar streets next Friday.

The firm, based in Columbia, S.C., is moving from the 201 South Tryon Square building, where it occupies nearly 14,200 square feet on two floors.

Sean Phelan, the managing member of the local office, says in a statement that increasing vacancy rates and falling rental rates uptown prompted the firm to reconsider its options.

“Traditionally uptown has had very high occupancy rates,” he says. “Since the recession, occupancy rates and rental rates have dropped. We decided to take advantage of that as part of our strategic growth in North Carolina.” Phelan says the new location will offer easier access for clients and afford enhanced technology as well.

Once the envy of cities for its extremely low vacancy rate, the uptown office market has been turned upside down by a surplus of space and tepid demand by corporate users that are recovering from the recession.

The last of four new uptown office towers, 1 Bank of America Center, is being completed, and landlords are coping with Wells Fargo & Co.’s decision to exit about 500,000 square feet of leased space in third-party buildings, including South Tryon Square.

The quoted rental rate at South Tryon Square ranges from $23 to $25 per square foot, while the quoted rate at Carillon is $26.50 per square foot. Those numbers are just a starting point, however, with building owners willing to cut deals at lower rates to land new tenants.

Mark Decherd of CB Richard Ellis represented Nexsen Pruet, working with a team including Steve Garrett, Tripp Guin, and Tom O’Brien. Jessica Brown

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