An R&D building with space for lease in Rancho Bernardo. Courtesy Colliers International
An R&D building with space for lease in Rancho Bernardo. Courtesy Colliers International

The demand for industrial and R&D space in the San Diego region is at a 15-year-high while vacancy rates are plummeting, according to a new report from Colliers International.

The commercial real estate company said nearly 1.4 million net square feet of space was leased in the first quarter, the most since the first quarter of 2000.

“If demand continues to be nearly as robust as it has been, then we can expect countywide vacancy to be down to nearly 5 percent by year end,” the company said in its quarterly report.

Demand for office space was also strong, though the net amount leased was less at 440,000 square feet and the vacancy rate higher at 12.1 percent.

Colliers said some 2.1 million square feet of new office space is under construction, and predicted that the office market would be stronger in 2015 than 2014.

The company said job growth as the economy improves is driving the strong commercial real estate market.

Chris Jennewein

Chris Jennewein is Editor & Publisher of Times of San Diego.