Greenspoint Struggles In Wake Of ExxonMobil’s Move To The Woodlands

The occupancy rate of the Greenspoint office space market, near Bush Intercontinental Airport, has fallen to 60 percent – the lowest of any submarket in Houston.

Ariel view of ExxonMobil Campus
Ariel rendering of the 385-acre ExxonMobil Campus

ExxonMobil's new campus in The Woodlands has been a boon for Houston-area real estate. Thousands of workers have flooded into the region from offices as far away as Virginia and Ohio. But it's coming at a price to the market for office space closer to downtown.

Champions Pipe & Supply, a subsidiary of Japanese conglomerate Mitsui & Co., is announcing plans to lease more than 19,000 square feet of office space at Greenspoint Place, near Bush InterContinental Airport. It's following on the heels of other companies, including Swift Energy and HealthHelp. But for all the new tenants, it's hard to fill the gaps Exxon has left behind.

"Exxon vacated a ton of space in Greenspoint. They had 2 million square feet there at one time, which is like two 50-story towers," says Ralph Bivins, editor of Realty News Report. "They have 60 percent occupancy. The city is divided up into submarkets by these professionals that lease office space, and Greenspoint has got 60 percent, and that's the worst submarket there is."

Houston's commercial real estate market has taken a beating this year. Job cuts tied to low oil prices have slashed the demand for office space.

Bivins says that's leading Hines, which owns Greenspoint Place, to offer more affordable rents in order to attract tenants.

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Andrew Schneider

Andrew Schneider

Politics and Government Reporter

Andrew heads Houston Public Media’s coverage of national, state, and local elections. He also reports on major policy issues before the Texas Legislature and county and city governments across Greater Houston. Before taking up his current post, Andrew spent five years as Houston Public Media’s business reporter, covering the oil...

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