The unemployment rate for Oklahoma City remains below both the state and national average, ending Q1 2019 at 3.0%. Office-using employment also showed signs of growth throughout the quarter. The professional & business services and financial activities sector grew by 2.7% and 3.6%, respectively.
There was a drop in net absorption compared to Q4 2019, though it lingers in positive territory for a second consecutive quarter. The Northwest submarket remains attractive to office users in the Oklahoma City metro, leading all other submarkets in terms of transaction volume.
The Oklahoma City market saw 69 lease transactions and 156,500 sq. ft. of gross absorption during Q1 2019.
There was a notable increase in construction activity throughout Q1 2019, particularly for Class A office buildings in the CBD and Midtown submarkets. Heartland Payment Systems is building a new 100,000-sq. ft., Class A office building downtown, while the 53,00-sq. ft. Monarch building is underway in Midtown.