Tech industry bolsters Seattle office market as Isilon, Zillow, Google and others expand


We’ve been tracking a number of high-profile real estate expansion stories in the Seattle tech industry in recent weeks, from HTC’s desire for a new building in Pioneer Square to Zillow’s new offices in downtown Seattle to Zulily’s rapid expansion in SoDo to Google’s new Bothell campus. Now, a report by the real estate firm Jones Lang LaSalle indicates how important the tech ecosystem is to the overall office market in Seattle.

The authors write:

“Thousands of new high-tech industry jobs created in the Puget Sound region have boosted the office market over the past three quarters, most notably in the Seattle CBD. Struggling or once employ buildings at the start of the recession have experienced significant occupancy gains as a result of this rapid growth, avoiding serious financial hardships and default.”

The report goes on to say that over 2.5 million square feet of space have been occupied by tech firms in the Seattle area in the past three quarters. This is having the impact of driving prices up.

But the tech industry also is causing some holes in the market, including the vacancy of the PacMed building on Beacon Hill. The Seattle Times reported today that Wright Runstad is facing foreclosure on the 16-story Art Deco building following the departure of Amazon.com to South Lake Union.