Have You Returned to the Office? Occupancy Rates are on the Rise, with Dallas Leading the Way

Office occupancy is creeping up across the U.S., with one Texas city leading an index of large metros where workers are returning to their buildings. Office buildings in Dallas had a 36.4 percent occupancy rate for the week ending Aug. 26 — the highest figure on the list and more than three times that of New York City, which was the least open city at just under 12 percent, according to a report from Kastle Systems. Houston’s occupancy rate was 23 percent during the same time period, down 6 percent from the previous week. The drop was likely the result of companies sending workers home in advance of Hurricane Laura. Dreary downtown: How COVID-19 turned downtown Houston into a ghost town Six months into the pandemic, the 10-city average was 23 percent. Falls Church, Va.-based Kastle Systems, which supplies security systems and services to the commercial real estate industry, has been collecting access data from the 3,600 buildings and 41,000 businesses it secures across 47 states to determine weekly office occupancy counts. The company’s figures are based on daily unique authorized user entries in each of its markets relative to their pre-COVID baselines. Click to read more at www.houstonchronicle.com.