Dec 20, 2022 - Business

Chicago office occupancy up from 2021, still below national levels

Change in office foot traffic in Chicago, 2019 to 2022
Data: Placer.ai; Chart: Axios Visuals

National return-to-office numbers are about 40% less than they were in 2019 and haven't budged much from this time last year.

Why it matters: In Chicago, offices are seeing just about half the visitors they had in 2019, which could have massive consequences for downtown businesses, real estate, transportation and taxes.

  • But even though this number is lower than the national average, it has improved significantly from a roughly 30% return to office last November.

What we're watching: Whether we'll see a repeat of last winter, when a spike of COVID-19 cases — among other things — sent in-office workdays plummeting in January.

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