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New LVEDC Video Highlights Lehigh Valley Office Sector

By Colin McEvoy on September 30, 2016

The Lehigh Valley is the perfect alternative for corporations and professional office users who want to be in an excellent location at a good cost, with all the amenities that a big city has to offer.

A newly-released video commissioned by the Lehigh Valley Economic Development Corporation (LVEDC) is highlighting the region’s office market and unique mix of economic assets that make the Lehigh Valley a perfect place for the high value business services sector.

“One of the big advantages of the Lehigh Valley is that we sit right here in the East Coast metropolis – 90 miles out of Manhattan, 60 miles above Philadelphia – with a very robust economy and great quality-of-life, but a lower cost,” LVEDC President and CEO Don Cunningham said in the video.

Produced by the Emmy Award-winning FireRock Productions, the video highlights the region’s central location, proximity to markets, strong workforce supply, higher educational institutions, vast selection of product, and competitive rental rates due to the lower cost of real estate.

This is the fifth in a series of six planned videos commissioned by LVEDC focused on the region’s four target sectors, entrepreneurial community, and redevelopment projects. Past videos focused on the region’s high performance manufacturing, life science research, and food and beverage processing sectors, as well as its entrepreneurial community.

Here is the direct link to the new entrepreneurship video on YouTube, which LVEDC encourages viewers to share and embed on their own websites or social media accounts.

“The office inventory in the Lehigh Valley marketplace is a vast selection of product, with suburban office parks that are very conveniently located to the three urban hubs of the Lehigh Valley,” Lisa Pektor, President of PennCap Properties, said in the video.

The video also features interviews with J.B. Reilly, founder and president of City Center Lehigh Valley; Phil Schenkel, vice president with JLL; and Chris Snyder, branch manager of Paychex, Inc. Several of the Lehigh Valley’s largest office users are also featured, including PPL, Air Products, Talen Energy, B. Braun, Lutron, Victaulic, and Crayola.

Schenkel notes the Lehigh Valley office market includes about 7.4 million square-feet in total inventory. City Center has developed about 700,000 square feet of Class A office space in Allentown over the last three years, Reilly said, largely thanks to tax incentives available through the Neighborhood Improvement Zone (NIZ).

“The quality and the cost of the lifestyle is very attractive, particularly when you compare it to New York and Philadelphia,” Reilly said.

The Lehigh Valley also boasts a very robust workforce supply and large amount of schools, including seven colleges and universities, three career and technical schools, and two community colleges.

“The employment base of over 600,000 people within a 30 minute drive really gives employers a tremendous network to draw from in all types of businesses,” Schenkel said.

The Atlanta-based Garner Economics has identified high value business services as one of the four target sectors of the Lehigh Valley based on the site-specific characteristics of the  region. These include its well-developed transportation infrastructure, high relative broadband rank, availability of suitable office space, and strong existing local pool of high-demand occupations.

Subscribe to the LVEDC YouTube channel to see the other videos in the series as they are released, and visit lehighvalley.org/office for more information about the region’s resources for entrepreneurs and startups.

Don Cunningham: New Economy Requires New Understanding

This column, written by LVEDC President and CEO Don Cunningham, originally appeared in Lehigh Valley Business on September 26, 2016. (Click here to read Cunningham’s previous [...]

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Lehigh ValleyQuick Facts

  • Industry Spotlight

    13.8% of Labor Force
    Employed in Professional & Business Services
    Q4 2016

  • By the Numbers
    $39.1 Billion

    Gross Domestic Product
    2016

  • Investor Spotlight
    City Center Lehigh Valley
  • Industry Spotlight

    9.8% of Labor Force
    Employed in Manufacturing
    Q4 2016

  • By the Numbers
    $3.44 Billion

    Exports
    2015

  • Investor Spotlight
    Air Products
  • Industry Spotlight

    1,504 Total Office Buildings
    Q2 2017

  • By the Numbers
    $57,510

    Median Household Income

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    1,770 Total Industrial Buildings
    Q2 2017

  • By the Numbers
    24,400

    New Jobs Created Over Past 5 Years

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    5.0% Industrial
    Vacancy Rate
    Q2 2017

  • By the Numbers
    658,477

    Population

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    7.7% Office
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    Q2 2017

  • By the Numbers
    342,493

    Labor Force

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    17.2% of Labor Force
    Employed in Health Care & Social Assistance

  • By the Numbers
    5,073

    Technology Patents from 2000-2015

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    9.1% Increase in exports
    Among top 20 markets nationally in export growth

  • By the Numbers
    25.8 Million

    Total Office Inventory (Square Feet)
    Q2 2017

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    UGI
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    10.1% Industrial rent growth
    Second highest in the U.S.

  • By the Numbers
    115.5 Million

    Total Industrial Inventory (Square Feet)
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