Access to transport critical for business location
Faced with rising fuel costs, ongoing traffic congestion and the proposed new tolls, Johannesburg’s business sector continues to focus on office accommodation which enables tenants to meet their requirements for secure, quality space coupled with convenience of location for easy access for staff and clients, says Jonathan Klimek, leasing and sales broker for JHI Properties in Gauteng.
“Increasingly we see that the emphasis, particularly among businesses with a large staff complement, is on buildings situated in convenient locations with good infrastructure and access to public transport. This is becoming more evident amid rising fuel prices and the proposed toll system,” he says.
“Another trend which we’ve noted is the growing interest from national and international businesses in regard to securing large space for call centres – which are springing up in South Africa in major centres such as Cape Town and Johannesburg.”
Klimek says a landmark 18-storey building currently offering office accommodation catering for both large and medium size businesses is 25 Owl Street, in prime position in a burgeoning media hub in Auckland Park, close to the SABC broadcasting studios, and just off the M1 close to the Empire Road offramp. The building is also within easy reach of the prestigious residential suburbs of Parktown - which is across the road from 25 Owl Street, and Westcliffe to the north.
“This area has good infrastructure and is a key broadcasting node, with major film schools and studios, broadcasting networks and various new media right on the doorstep. As a result, 25 Owl Street already has a major film company as a tenant.
“With sweeping views over the city, the building is also an ideal location for call centres as it has good connectivity and is within walking distance of the nearby BRT Station - on the BRT Route which runs to the Park Gautrain Station, providing easy access for staff.
“ It has the advantage of being within easy reach of the trendy 44 Stanley Avenue precinct - with its boutiques, restaurants and design studios, Milpark Galleries Shopping Centre, Campus Square Shopping Centre, Virgin Active, Milpark Hospital and conference facilities. It is also located on the ‘education belt’, near Wits University and the University of Johannesburg and has easy access to Braamfontein CBD,” says Klimek.
He says while each floor of 25 Owl Street comprises approximately 800sqm, this space can be further subdivided based on the landlord’s approval, in order to accommodate even small businesses. “For businesses seeking large space, such as call centres or for corporate headquarters, there is also large space available from 1000-9000sqm. Depending on the tenants’ space requirements, the landlord will consider rentals from R80 per square metre (excluding VAT).
Klimek adds that a growing desire for cost efficiencies may see businesses increasingly gravitating towards refurbished buildings or modern buildings which allow flexible configurations which enable the most effective utilisation of space. “25 Owl Street has forward-thinking architectural design and each floor is open plan, with pillars only in the centre of the building. This provides tenants with flexibility to design their interior to suit their own requirements and in keeping with their own corporate image. While the building is B grade based purely on age, the interior is renovated with A grade finishes.”
In addition, he says the penthouse floor has its own spacious private balcony and panoramic views. The building has secure parking, access control and 24 hour security and is managed by JHI Properties.