California: Facebook parent Meta and. Microsoft are vacating office buildings in . Seattle and Bellevue, Washington – the latest sign of a shift in the tech sector and a softening of . The office market – according to the Seattle Times.
Facebook confirmed Friday that it plans to sublease its offices in the six-story . Arbor Block 333 in downtown Seattle and the 11-story Block 6 in the. Spring District in Bellevue, the Seattle Times reported.
The Menlo Park, Calif.-based social media giant said . It is reviewing leases for other Seattle-area office buildings. A soft market is a phase of. The economic cycle characterized by more sellers than buyers and lower prices.
Redmond-based Microsoft reports confirmed it will not renew its lease at the 26-story . City Center Plaza in Bellevue when that lease expires in June 2024, the Seattle Times said the same day.
The Seattle Times said the announcements come as . The continued popularity of remote work and a tech recession. With massive layoffs both reduce demand for office space in Seattle and elsewhere.
Both Meta and Microsoft have embraced. Remote work as their workforces are shuffled into the sustainable sector. According to the daily newspaper. In November, Meta announced 726 Seattle-area layoffs.
Meta spokeswoman . Tracy Clayton told the Seattle Times that the leasing decisions were driven by . The company’s remote or “distributed” work. But he admitted that, “given . The economic climate,” Meta was also “…trying to be prudent”.
Meta currently occupies all Seattle’s Arbor Block 333 and will occupy all Block 6. Which is slated to open later this year. The company still has offices in 29 buildings and about 8,000 employees in the Seattle area. Which remains the company’s second-largest engineering hub outside of. Its Menlo Park headquarters, Clayton said.
A Microsoft spokesperson characterized its decision about. City Center Plaza as part of the firm’s “ongoing evaluation of its real estate portfolio to ensure . We provide an exceptional place to work and create greater. Collaboration and community for our employees.”
The City Center Plaza decision also comes amid a massive redevelopment of . Microsoft’s Redmond campus, part of which will be completed by the end of 2023. But the daily newspaper said Friday’s news added to an already bearish forecast for . The Seattle-area office market as it struggles. Economic headwinds and the sluggish return of remote office workers.
According to a new report from commercial real estate agency Colliers. The struggle is most visible in downtown Seattle. Where total office vacancy now stands at 25 percent.
The Seattle Times said. That even non-vacant offices are often half-empty, due to remote work. From last summer, about 40 percent of workers were present before . The pandemic, according to cellphone location data from Placer.ai posted by . The Downtown Seattle Association.