2018 Kent Property Market Report

Posted on 6 November 2018

Considered the ultimate guide to investment and development in Kent, the Kent Property Market Report reviews property deals and activity helping to support growth and economic prosperity across the county.

The latest edition, launched on Thursday, 1 November at Leas Cliff Hall in Folkestone, showcases the important part Ashford is playing in attracting investment to the county as part of the regeneration plans being delivered by Ashford Borough Council.

“The driver for this unprecedented level of investment is Ashford Borough Council’s hands-on approach and bold ‘AshfordFor’ inward investment campaign. This has raised interest in the borough and helped attract investors from across Kent and beyond. The council’s expansion of its own corporate property portfolio is focused on boosting the availability of new commercial and industrial space.”

Extract from Kent Property Marker Report 2018 (p.37)

“The driver for this unprecedented level of investment is Ashford Borough Council’s hands-on approach and bold ‘AshfordFor’ inward investment campaign.”

Kent Property Market Report

The report not only highlighted the Council’s innovative approach to regeneration but also showcases it as a model to follow (p.03) with key developments shaping the town’s future, such as Connect 38, the first phase of the Ashford Commercial Quarter, and the Park Mall initiative to revive the high street.

“Kent illustrates many success stories as town centres are reinvented in the face of this period of structural change. […] The impact of such schemes on rents inevitably takes time, particularly given the challenging backdrop. The potential impact is exemplified in Ashford where the vacancy rate has fallen following the borough council’s purchase and management of the now near full Park Mall shopping centre, combined with activity across the wider town.” (p.10).

In terms of commercial property, Ashford has managed to ‘attract occupiers in high growth industries’, with Wilkins Kennedy moving in Connect 38 or Forza Industries investing in premises at Orbital Park.

“Kent illustrates many success stories as town centres are reinvented in the face of this period of structural change.” The Kent Property Market Report highlights Ashford as a great example.

“The county has seen a number of significant letting as well as buoyant activity at the smaller end of the scale. At Axiom, Orbital Park, Ashford, Forza Industries took 2,325m2 at a rent of £102 per m2 in May, following Hire station taking 672m2 at £108 per m2 last October. The completion of Phase 1 of the park brings much needed new units to the Ashford area.” (p.08)

Tourism and Leisure was another strong angle, with Ashford featured prominently, including the Curious Brewery development on Victoria Way; Ashford Designer Outlet’s £90m expansion; Elwick Place leisure and cinema complex opening in December and the new Gusbourne Nest Tasting Room (p.12-13).

In terms of residential development, Finberry, Riverside Park and Chilmington have reached an exciting stage with Chilmington establishing itself as a landmark in the wider Kent Garden Town trend. (p.37).

The report demonstrates how Ashford Borough Council has broken new ground with its inward investment campaign and has been leading the way for other boroughs to follow.

To find out more and read the full report, head to the Kent Property Market website.