Data: How the pandemic has supercharged the warehouse space race

Retailer warehouse

The closure of ‘non-essential’ stores because of the coronavirus pandemic and the associated surge in home delivery heralded record warehouse space expansion in 2020.

More than 50.5 million sq ft of new space was leased in 2020 – 12 million more than the previous record year in 2016, according to data from property consultancy and estate agent Savills.

US giant Amazon was the most active, snapping up 25% of all new space leased in the UK. Savills also found short-term leases of five years or less accounted for 12% of all new warehouse space taken. 

Three business types – grocery, multichannel and pureplay – accounted for 21.3 million sq ft of the 50.5 million as businesses sought to capitalise on the huge demand for ecommerce during the coronavirus crisis. 

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