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Comcast survey: ‘Smart’ office buildings better at luring tenants

Forget gyms and cafeterias — advanced communications services such as Metro Ethernet, broadband Internet, and video have eclipsed weight rooms and on-site food options as one of the chief selling points when it comes to attracting and retaining office-building tenants.

So concludes a new survey from Comcast Corp., which also offers such services.

Philadelphia-based Comcast said it polled nearly 500 office building owners and property managers to see how they rated the importance of communications services as a draw for luring new tenants and retaining existing tenants. Building owners replied that tenants are looking for “smart’’ office space — space that is both environmentally friendly and technologically advanced.

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As more companies turn to cloud-computing services, demand has increased for advanced communications services. One result is that companies now rank high-bandwidth network connections as more important than gyms and cafeterias in making decisions about where to lease office space, Comcast said.

According to the survey, 90 percent of respondents said that access to advanced communications ranked near the top of the list of desirable features, after price, parking, and location. The poll, an online questionnaire, was conducted last month, Comcast said.

More than one third of respondents, Comcast said, indicated that the topic of access to advanced communications services is raised in 75 percent of negotiations with prospective tenants.

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