The region continues to recover from the pandemic with more employees returning to the office.
Upper Merion Township has shown a great deal of progress over the last three years, which is on par with other commercial submarkets experiencing a steady climb of employees back to their respective Townships. Data from Placer.ai shows a positive trend over time from the initial drop in visits in 2020, to a continuing lag in 2021, and then a dramatic return in 2022. Upper Merion Township had 14.1M visits by employees in 2019, but that dropped to a low of 8.3M visits in 2021. However, according to Placer.ai, 77% of employees returned to UMT in 2022 with over 10.8M visits.
Current office policies continue to swing away from remote-only to hybrid or traditional on-site commutes. It is no longer a question of if employees will return to the office, but rather how many days will they spend there in an increasingly hybrid environment? In a January opinion article by Allison Schrager, Bloomberg published a chart highlighting 28.8% of all paid workdays at the end of October 2022 were employees working from home. That is a steady drop from the high of 61.5% of days worked from home at the beginning of May 2020. This drop will continue slowly as in-person interaction becomes an important experience and work-product verification with the increasing switch to automation and artificial intelligence.