CB1 – the new city quarter for Cambridge


26 February 2021

Knowledge-intensive industries driving all-time high demand for offices and laboratory space

Demand for offices and laboratories is at an all-time high after the second half of 2020 saw a return to typical levels of office take-up following a COVID-19 disrupted first half of the year.

Research conducted by local property agent Bidwells reports that activity has resumed across most business sectors, with knowledge-intensive industries driving the biggest rise in office take-up.

The community of knowledge-intensive businesses, largely grown out of CB1, accounts for 69% of Cambridge’s letting activity in 2020. Amazon and Microsoft are among the knowledge-intensive business community occupying CB1 office space, with both working to help combat the effects of coronavirus throughout the pandemic. 

Research Director at Bidwells, Sarah Foxley, said: “The science and tech sectors drove investment transactions to £300m in 2020; we estimate that this will rise for 2021 for both offices and laboratories as industries continue to thrive, settling back to pre-COVID trend levels or higher."

The latest addition to the CB1 innovation quarter at 20 Station Road, which is starting on site and due to open its doors in 2023, has been pre-let to premium flexible workspace provider, Fora, following the brand’s expansion into Cambridge.

Fora has agreed to the lease the entire 64,500-sq-ft building, setting a new prime rental level for Cambridge at £48.50 per sq ft.


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