Skip to main content Skip to footer

2020 Lawrence Market Snapshot

Download Report
Lawrence Snapshot Cover_header
To read the full 2020 Lawrence Market Snapshot, please download the report.

2019 Office Summary

  • Office vacancy had a modest decrease from 2018’s year-end of 12.11% to 2019’s closing at 10.47%. 
  • The Downtown submarket absorption reduced its vacancy to just under 5% in 2019, which is a trend indicative of businesses who want to locate near amenities such as dining, shopping and residential.   
  • Medical projects led the way in 2019 with LMH Health West’s groundbreaking, which will add more than 200,000 SF of new space and is scheduled to be open in Fall of 2020.  Panda Pediatrics opened their new location with nearly 23,000 SF at the former Eagle’s Lodge on 6th Street.
  • While office activity was at an inconsistent pace compared to previous years, landlords committed to renovating mature spaces to be more modern and refreshed. In each instance of a landlord’s investment, leases were quickly and successfully transacted.
  • The former Eagle’s and Montana Mike’s renovations are indicative of trends converting retail spaces to medical office uses allowing growing companies to occupy standalone properties with ample parking for their patients. 
  • Larger office floorplates have been sought after more recently than in years past for outside companies evaluating expansion into the Lawrence market with companies such as Blue Cross. Quality product is limited in these size requirements, limiting the ability to be competitive in attracting new jobs to the marketplace.   
2020 Office Forecast
  • Medical and Technology users will continue to lead the way with expansions signed by growing companies such as and growing medical offices and relocations driven by the LMH Health West Campus.  
  • Office suites under 1,500 SF are the sweet spot for most office users, with expectations of updated finishes and adequate parking at competitive rates. 
  • Businesses entering the marketplace are concerned about recruiting a qualified workforce, and their ability to locate in an area that supports a live/work lifestyle with amenities.  
  • Vacancy may creep upward slightly with the spec space included at LMH Health West, but overall is expected to be healthy in all other areas of the marketplace.

2019 Industrial Summary

  • Industrial vacancy remained virtually unchanged in 2019, with a slight decrease in vacancy from 3.27% at the end of 2018 to a 3.15% vacancy at year end 2019.
  • In East Hills Business Park, Plastikon completed a 50,000 SF expansion to their building, while Grandstand began their expansion that will be completed in 2020.  Both projects used the Catalyst Program through the City of Lawrence.  
  • Demand for industrial spaces under 5,000 SF remains the norm, with a few companies considering expansion in 2020.
  • US Engineering has committed to a site in Lawrence VenturePark, which will come online in 2020.  Their expansion includes a 100,000 SF building on 25 acres, with 80 new jobs to Lawrence. 
  • Several companies have shown interest in the new VanTrust spec building at VenturePark, and lease negotiations are pending for the first tenant.
2020 Industrial Forecast
  • Logistics and warehousing are the most requested use of industrial properties.
  • The ability to easily warehouse and transport products to a major highway and freight lines are key components to industrial spaces. Biggest demand remains closest to I-70 due to the quality of the highway. 
  • New companies seeking space of more than 20,000 SF will expect incentives to encourage growth into the market. This is commonplace in today’s economic environment.
  • Industrial lease rates remain flat, with no new small space inventory under 5,000 SF planned for the market.

Lawrence Snapshot Inside 1

Lawrence Snapshot Inside 2 

Colliers International Kansas City Lawrence 2020 Commercial Real Estate Forecast Market Snapshot

2020 Lawrence Market Snapshot

Download Report
Related Experts

Martin Maguire

Senior Director Research

Kansas City

Martin Maguire is the Senior Research Director for Colliers International | Kansas City. As part of this role, he coordinates and supervises the various resources and personnel in the research department. Martin is responsible for the aggregation, analysis, interpretation, and reporting of market research, including all quarterly and annual market reports for the Kansas City and Lawrence markets. He establishes procedures for acquiring, entering and verifying real estate marketing data related to properties, listings, tenants and comparable transactions for all local divisions tracked within the database, while maintaining data integrity. He works with all transaction service professionals in serving clients by providing an elevated set of skills, analysis and project management. He is in charge of producing all reports and gathering data for use in analysis, marketing and presentations to corporate clients. He develops client-oriented interpretations and market trend graphics for client understanding. 


Martin has been with the firm since July 2012.  Prior to his association with the firm, Martin was employed by Cohen Financial, a commercial real estate investment banking company specializing in loan servicing with the asset management team.  Prior to his move to Kansas City, Martin previously worked with Capital One N.A. as a disposition analyst within the REO Division, as well as with CoStar Group Inc. as a research associate.


View expert

Allison Moore

Senior Vice President


‚ÄčAllison began her real estate career in 1998 and joined the Winbury Group, now known as Colliers, in February of 2001, when the Lawrence branch opened.  In 2012, Allison was named a Senior Vice President where she specializes in sales and leasing for both the office, retail sectors, and investment sales.  Allison represents a significant number of properties in Lawrence, collectively comprising of several hundred thousand square feet.  A few of her projects include LMH Health West, 901 Kentucky, Proxi Lawrence, a few bank owned properties and several downtown Massachusetts Street properties.  She has successfully negotiated transactions in Topeka as well, including the former Circuit City redevelopment off Wanamaker.  Allison is known for her exceptional customer service and hard work, and has numerous repeat clients on both the local and national level.

View expert

J Taylor

Vice President


J. Taylor joined the Colliers team in 2019 after a successful career in private club development. J. is a self-described commercial real estate generalist specializing in the smaller markets of western Kansas specifically Lawrence, Topeka and Manhattan. J. enjoys both sales and leasing activities and is known for his ability to bring groups together and simplify what can be complicated work.

View expert