Office market Bern

Review and Outlook

The availability rate in the Bern region edged up year-on-year from 1.9% to 2.1% as of end 2022, leaving a total of 62,000 m2 of office space available for lease, 7,000 m2 more than a year earlier. The market remains tight in the city centre, where there are hardly any large-scale office spaces available.

This chapter is part of the Office Market Study 2023 by JLL Switzerland

Slight increase in office-space supply

The biggest increase in supply in the Bern region was registered in the Kirchenfeld-Schosshalde district (+8,300 m2), where the availability rate is also the highest at 8.5%. Supply expansions were also registered in the Länggasse-Felsenau and Mattenhof-Weissenbühl submarkets (+2,500 m2 in both areas). The volume of available office space contracted, in contrast, in the Breitenrain-Lorraine submarket (–3,600 m2) and in Ittigen (–2,800 m2).

The current prime rent price for extensively fitted-out office spaces in Bern stands at a net CHF 370 per m2 per annum. One exception is the space in the new Bubenbergzentrum adjacent to the main train station, which will be ready for occupancy in early 2025. The asking price there stands at CHF 450 per m2 p.a., and four of the building’s five office floors have already been leased, leaving only one still available.

Construction on the BERN 131 project located in the middle of the Wankdorf motorway interchange has commenced. The 12,900 m2 of planned office space in the sustainable energy-plus building in timber construction is reportedly already encountering pleasing demand and is scheduled to be ready for occupancy by 2025. The Metropark building adjacent to the RBS train station in Worblaufen is likewise slated to be completed by 2025; three of the five floors there have already been pre-let at present.

More vacancies likely in the medium term

There is unlikely to be much movement in the Bern office market before the end of 2024. Afterwards, though, a number of new building completions could lead to some tenant shifting and higher vacancies in the market. Besides the projects cited above, the final stage of the WankdorfCity business park is also nearing completion, to be followed by the first building lots of the Ausserholligen development project a little later. The Ausserholligen site will not only be the future home of the new headquarters of the EWB utility company and the BLS railway company, but will also house the Bern campus of the Bern University of Applied Sciences, where several geographically dispersed university departments are to be consolidated from 2028 onward. Moreover, 18 scattered office sites are also scheduled to be consolidated under one roof in the new Bern Police Centre on the Juch/Hallmatt site in Köniz in 2028.

In addition, another 16'000 m2 of office space on Europaplatz square will be freed up already in late 2024 when the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation moves out and into an administrative building in Zollikofen owned by the federal government.

Office market study Switzerland 2023

You can find the entire office market study Switzerland 2023 here. The report provides comprehensive insight on the office space markets in Zurich, Geneva, Bern, Lausanne, Basel and Zug. In addition to providing key data and reporting on the most significant changes in Switzerland’s largest market areas, the office market study also highlights some regional idiosyncrasies and presents a brief digression on Europe.