Today I was driving along a route that I rarely go in Johannesburg, but it is a route that I used to drive along in the past. Most businesses still exist, but there are unquestionably entire buildings that used to house one or more businesses which are not TOTALLY EMPTY. Some have been empty for years now. Yet in the past they were never empty.
There is also a new type of business that has sprung up that never used to exist before and that is "Storage" – places where you can rent storage areas and store items there. There are a lot of storage businesses now, and I think this is a method whereby empty business space is being used. So I think that is also a sign of empty commercial space that is being converted for a new type of business.
But there are definitely places that are totally empty and have been for years.
It is a definite sign that South Africa is NOT as profitable as it once was.