Downtown San Antonio's office market continues to suffer, despite gains in the north and northwest sides, 1200 WOAI news reports.


  A report by the commercial real estate firm REOC reveals that the office vacancy rate in the Central Business District is at 29,6%, the highest vacancy rate in the city and far above the average office vacancy rate for the seven distinct regions of 18.8%.


  REOC says the office market slowed in the second half of 2013, after absorbing some 300,000 square feet of new tenants at the start of the year, only 34,000 square feet was leased between October and December.


  But REOC Vice President Blake Bonner says the city's office market absorption is strong enough to warrant new construction.  He says the average rent for Class A office space is $25.35 per square feet, with the Far North Center area, considered the most desirable area, going for more than $30 per square foot.


  The most abundant office space remains in the northwest and core north center parts of the city, but the far north central has the lowest vacancy rate and the most  new space.


  But downtown continues to lag, and with CPS Energy considering leaving it's two headquarters buildings downtown, the situation may worsen.  Currently, 1.6 million of the 5.6 million total square feet of office inventory downtown is vacant.