Bonifacio Global City, Makati, and Ortigas have long been the centerpoints of the Philippine commercial office market. It is in these cities where most of the country’s multinational companies (MNCs) and startups operate, fuelling the demand for more high-quality office spaces in these areas.
But as more companies occupy the central business districts and rental rates go up, businesses need more location choices. While the southern part of Metro Manila is known for its modern cities, going north to the C5 Corridor and Greater Ortigas, which include cities like Quezon City and Mandaluyong is the most practical move due to several factors.
Newer Buildings and Fresher Spaces
Excluding BGC, Makati and Ortigas have been known CBDs for decades, meaning that most of the buildings are just as old. Aging buildings are associated with higher maintenance costs and slower operations, which is not an option for any company, especially startups that require quality spaces to incubate from.
Quezon City addresses this problem through a newly built office building that is perfect for operations of any size. The Zeta Tower in Quezon City was just recently finished and is already providing 20 office floors, with the 7th floor featuring the first flexible workspace in QC. Mandaluyong, on the other hand, boasts the new Rockwell Business Center Sheridan Tower 1. This building has nine office floors and two floors dedicated for retail and dining.
Simply put, new buildings offer better facilities. In today’s competitive business landscape, you’ll need the best amenities at your disposal to gain the upper hand on the competition, and a good office building must always be your first consideration.
A Massive Workforce
In 2010, Quezon City had the largest employable population in the entire Philippines with more than 1,672,000 qualified workers. These potential candidates are also quite youthful, given that most of the city’s workforce belong to a younger cohort (20-30 years old). Combine that youth with educational attainment from top universities like U.P. Diliman and Ateneo, and you have a solid labor force.
Having an office space in QC can directly affect employees as well. KMC Savills once reported that 80% of workers in BGC and Makati lived in Quezon City. The commute from QC to these areas can be a daunting task due to the distance and traffic, so having an office that's closer to where they live cuts their travel time, decreasing their stress levels while increasing their productivity.
A Well of Potential
A 2017 report by the Manila Times showed that Mandaluyong had a 42% lease rate, higher than even Makati’s 35%. In addition, the current administration’s “Build, Build, Build” program is set to directly affect the Greater Ortigas area with the addition of the EDSA Central Corridor BRT (Bus Rail Transit) which will connect Metro Manila to multiple provinces in Luzon.
The rise of the Rockwell Sheridan Tower and Global Link Center, both Grade A buildings, will also drive further development in the district by featuring Greater Ortigas office space.
Quezon City has also shown an impressive and steady rate of economic progress. Every year, 12,600 new businesses emerge in the district. Moreover, QC already houses three major IT parks: Eastwood City Cyberpark, Araneta Cyber Center, and UP-Ayala Technohub.
It’s clear now; Greater Ortigas (Mandaluyong, Quezon City, Capitol Commons, Eastwood, and Circulo Verde) is the next place to be for businesses looking to expand or set up a headquarters in Metro Manila. Of course, the established CBDs are still viable options to set up operations, but the benefits that these emerging locations offer must not be overlooked.
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