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Old July 13th, 2005, 06:10 PM   #1
josh white
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New Tower Could be Tallest (Calgary)

New tower could be tallest

Gina Teel and David Parker
Calgary Herald; with a file from CanWest News Service

Wednesday, July 13, 2005


EnCana Corp. is poised to develop a two-million-square-foot office tower complex in the heart of downtown Calgary that could be Western Canada's tallest.

The development -- which industry insiders estimate at $540 million including land -- will house EnCana's 3,200 Calgary employees and contractors as well as retail shops upon its tentative completion in 2009, said company spokesman Alan Boras.

"Essentially, we're looking to purchase a piece of property in downtown Calgary to develop an EnCana office complex to house its Calgary employees, which are now housed within five buildings," he said.

EnCana, the biggest producer of natural gas in North America, is the third-largest company in Canada with a market capitalization of $46.5-billion.

Boras said the company intends to plan and design the complex to fit the needs of its work and employees, and that the project will be similar in size to Bankers Hall.

Boras declined to provide further details, but speculation in the commercial real estate industry expects the project to feature two towers, one of which will be more than 60 storeys high.

If so, the EnCana complex would be the tallest tower in Western Canada -- a title currently held by the 52-storey Petro Canada Centre.

Boras wouldn't confirm any details, saying it's still undetermined what the final form of the complex will be.

He also wouldn't confirm the site, saying Encana is working on a number of potential property locations but had yet to make a final arrangement.

Mike Gigliuk, director of research for Alberta at CB Richard Ellis, said it's no surprise that a company of EnCana's size is choosing to build its own office space in Calgary.

"Right now, Calgary has the lowest downtown vacancy rates in North America, if not the world," he said.

The 10-year historical average is approximately 500,000 square feet per year.

Mark St. Pierre, senior vice- president of Barclay Street Real Estate Ltd. said once Encana's complex is built, it will free up about one million square feet of office space downtown.

"That alone would increase vacancy in downtown Calgary by three per cent, all things being equal," said St. Pierre.

Currently, Calgary's vacancy rate for downtown office space is 5.6 per cent.

While tongues are wagging over the sheer size of the project, Boras said the primary motive is to achieve operational efficiencies and cost savings by building one office complex to house EnCana's Calgary staff.

"This is simply continuation of the evolution, growth and success that EnCana and its two predecessor companies have achieved over more than three decades of operations," Boras said.

EnCana was formed in 2002 in a $28-billion merger of PanCanadian EnergyCorp. and Alberta Energy Corp.

gteel@theherald.canwest.com

EnCana's Proposed Office Tower

EnCana Corp. is proposing a two-million-square-foot office tower complex in the heart of downtown Calgary to house the company's 3,200 city employees and contractors. Insiders estimate that the development, including land, will cost $540 million.

First Canadian Place

Toronto

72 floors

298 metres

EnCana tower

Calgary

(proposed)

About 60 floors

Petro Canada Centre

Calgary

52 floors

214.9 metres

Shell Centre

Calgary

33 floors

140 metres

Telus Tower

Calgary

30 floors

111.6 metres
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Old July 13th, 2005, 07:10 PM   #2
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Thats great to hear! Can't wait to see some renderings.
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Old July 13th, 2005, 07:10 PM   #3
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Kickass! Finally we see something official out of Encana and not just another rumour!

Can't wait to see what the design looks like!

EDIT: Wait just a tic here, did I read that correctly? Another twin!?! God damn!
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Last edited by Boris550; July 13th, 2005 at 07:20 PM.
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Old July 13th, 2005, 07:23 PM   #4
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It better be in the form of one tower, and not twins...so help me...

We need to email Encana and tell them this...maybe even email some pics of your favorite 'scrapers to give them some ideas???
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Old July 13th, 2005, 08:45 PM   #5
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I just scanned this from today's Calgary Herald:



EDIT: Woops, the original was a little large. I posted a smaller pic.
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Old July 13th, 2005, 08:49 PM   #6
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I hope the tower is at least 300 metres and is not a box.
Edit: How many square feet is first canadian centre in Toronto?
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Old July 13th, 2005, 09:23 PM   #7
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FCP is 2.7 million sq. ft. If the Calgary tower thing isn't in the way for building height anymore, will they be building a taller structure? They could 'skinny the building'.
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Old July 13th, 2005, 09:37 PM   #8
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^ They certainly could. It sounds like all that has been confirmed is that there will be a tower complex, it will be around 2-million-sq-ft, and it will house around 3200 employees, contracters, and (ground level) retail. The twin is just speculation, which certainly wouldn't be anything new in Calgary, but isn't anything official. Even the height is just an estimate. Encana certainly has the resources to pull off a taller single tower, and they might just do that.
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Old July 13th, 2005, 11:46 PM   #9
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sweeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeet
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Old July 14th, 2005, 02:21 AM   #10
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That is great news!!!
BTW, what is it with Calgary always having twin towers?
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Old July 14th, 2005, 02:44 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ssiguy2
BTW, what is it with Calgary always having twin towers?
I think it is because Calgary's downtown has quite a bit of open space and it is much cheaper to build 2 shorter towers then 1 supertall one.
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Old July 14th, 2005, 03:00 AM   #12
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Now that Calgary has a pretty dense downtown, it is high time for an iconic tower...hopefully Encana will provide that!
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Old July 14th, 2005, 07:24 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ssiguy2
That is great news!!!
BTW, what is it with Calgary always having twin towers?
It's b/c Calgary's office market is very cyclical in terms of supply and demand. Developing a 2-tower phased project is less risky versus developing one large building given Calgary's overall demand. If one examines the history of Calgary's office market, one will find that there are many unbuilt proposals versus built. During high office absorption times (such as what its experiencing today), many developers propose an office building complex. The one's who get the tenants signed up win and the ones that don't lose.
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Old July 14th, 2005, 07:29 AM   #14
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Please don't be a box. No siamese twins either.

It'll be an amazing addition to Cowtowns's skyline. Congrads!
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Old July 14th, 2005, 08:42 AM   #15
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You go Calgary!
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Old July 14th, 2005, 06:07 PM   #16
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If it turns out to be in the international style...
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Old July 17th, 2005, 11:25 PM   #17
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Yes, I'm hoping for a non-box too! I hope for a great distinctive design for Calgary. Good news!
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Old July 17th, 2005, 11:54 PM   #18
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Here is a rendering for a building that was proposed back in the 1980s called "Alberta Plaza 75" which was 75 stories. Encana should consider it.

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Old July 18th, 2005, 01:49 AM   #19
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I like the base and the building but something more defining in the top 5 stories or so would be a real asset.
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Old July 18th, 2005, 02:45 AM   #20
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The base of the building looks REALLY fragile, wouldn't the building just tip over!?
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