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Old January 22nd, 2006, 11:50 PM   #261
Skybean
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. I thought I would update the masses.
-------------------------------------------------------------


New Toronto office towers on horizon

Large blocks of office space in short supply


By David Hatton - Business Edge
Published: 01/19/2006 - Vol. 2, No. 2

Commercial and industrial real estate markets will continue to be a hot topic across the country this year as vacancy rates tighten and rents rise, according to experts.

"All of Canada is a very hot investment market right now," says Michael Brooks, executive director of the Toronto-based Real Property Association of Canada, an industry association for large-scale owners of commercial real estate. "You have bidders lining up five to 10 deep for practically any property of any size out there."

Brooks says large-scale tenants are the biggest part of the market, with big blocks of space becoming scarce.

"The most interesting part of this is really hidden from the general public," he says. "It's an extremely competitive market. You have landlords who are approaching tenants who have their leases coming up within the next year and offering them all kinds of incentives to lock in for the next five to eight years. That would put them safely past the lead time it would take to put up any new building."

Michael Brooks
Observers say Toronto's skyline is set to change in the next year or two with two major office buildings proposed. Another major developer expects to announce a third project within the next few months.

If completed, they would be the first large office buildings built in the downtown core in the past decade.

"They are all trying to pursue the same group of tenants, either within their current base or new ones they hope to bring into the fold," Brooks says. "There are some large tenants, typically law firms, who are running out of space in their current location.

"It becomes a zero-sum game, but if developers can offer them another building with more space, at least they can keep the tenants in their existing portfolio."

The first big announcement came in September when Cadillac Fairview Corp. Ltd. announced plans to build a $400-million 48-storey office tower on Wellington Street, just west of King and Bay streets.

It would be beside the proposed 53-storey $325-million Ritz-Carlton Hotel and Residences, a joint venture between Ritz-Carlton, Graywood Developments and Cadillac Fairview.



Cadillac Fairview spokesman Neil Murphy says plans are moving ahead and the company is talking to several potential anchor tenants, although he declined to say how many or how close they were to closing a deal. "We don't get into predictions about what might happen," he says. "This is a very competitive market, but we feel there is still a lot of potential."

The second major announcement in the downtown core last year was from Menkes Developments Ltd. at 25 York St., near the Air Canada Centre and proposed Maple Leaf Square condo development.
A Menkes representative declined to answer questions about the project.

Melissa Coley, vice-president of investor relations and communications for Brookfield Properties, confirms the company is in discussions with prospective anchor tenants for the third project at Bay and Adelaide streets.

"Things are certainly moving forward," she said in a telephone interview from New York. "There hasn't been any official announcement on that yet. We don't usually discuss the progress of negotiations, but there is a great deal of interest in that property."

Lesley Yule, director of research at J.J. Barnicke Ltd. in Toronto, points out the proposed office towers may not all get built. The Bay-Adelaide Centre project has been on hold for years, with only the below-grade parking garage and foundation completed before work stopped.

"It's not like they've broken ground yet," she says. "These projects would not go ahead without tenants signed. The key is to find those larger tenants and that's what everyone is scrambling to do. Nobody knows exactly how many companies are looking right now."

Yule says rents and vacancy rates are starting to return to levels seen in the dot-com craze of 2000. "Rents will vary on a submarket basis across the Greater Toronto Area or even Canada for that matter. As vacancies continue to decrease this year, then we predict rental rates will get pushed slightly higher."

J.J. Barnicke research has shown gross rents for an A-class office building in Toronto range from $26.19 per sq. ft. in the Don Mills Road and Eglinton Avenue area to $51.28 in the downtown core.

Just outside of Toronto, in places such as Brampton, the average rent per square foot is $24.

Yule says it's "anybody's guess" which of the three projects will go ahead, but notes Menkes has had good success with a building it built in North York at 5000 Yonge St. The two other players downtown - Cadillac Fairview and Brookfield - also have strong reputations, she adds.

A J.J. Barnicke global research report released this month says office construction activity increased 75 per cent in 2005, with more than seven million sq. ft. under way, two-thirds of that in downtown markets. The Toronto area represents about half of the Canadian office market.

The report identified Ottawa as another Ontario hotspot, with more than 1.2 million sq. ft. of development under construction.

Dell Computers, Abbott Point of Care and Arvato Services Canada have all expanded to the Ottawa market in the past year, putting pressure on large blocks of vacant space.

Competition for space in the industrial sector is also becoming fierce, with some companies forced to go outside Toronto if they want affordable space, says Ron Ridsdill, chairman of the Toronto Real Estate Board's commercial division.

He adds that cities such as Mississauga also are becoming overcrowded.

"You've got places as far away as Brantford becoming popular because of their affordable land, taxes and proximity to major highways. Companies haven't got a hope of expanding in the GTA if they want any large amounts of space. It's gotten crazy," Ridsdill says.

Greater Toronto Area

Population, 5.4 million

Office Inventory, 121.9 million sq. ft.

Office Vacancy, 10.7 per cent

Class ‘A’ Vacancy, 7.9 per cent

Industrial Inventory, 687 million sq. ft.

Industrial Vacancy, 5.2 per cent

Source: J.J. Barnicke Global Views 2006 report


------------------------------------------------------------

Rumour (via UrbanToronto) has it that a Dubai investor has purchased the main penthouse along with two smaller penthouse units at the Ritz. Construction has been pegged to this year with occupancy in 2009. Trump and Ritz will likely break ground this year!

Ritz:
http://www.theresidencestoronto.com/flash/main.htm

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Last edited by Skybean; January 22nd, 2006 at 11:58 PM.
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Old January 23rd, 2006, 02:38 AM   #262
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menkes also purchased the property across the street of their proposed office building from fairmont hotels (who had planned to build a 37 storey hotel)so this will be a larger scale project than expected.
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Old January 23rd, 2006, 03:13 AM   #263
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How is it that they are proposing office towers, when vacancy rates are at 8 and 10 percent?
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Old January 23rd, 2006, 03:44 AM   #264
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It does seem like a high figure but the absorbtion rate is quite high and it takes atleast 2-3 years to get any of them built so we are talking close to the end of the decade.
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Old January 23rd, 2006, 04:39 AM   #265
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SQ4R
How is it that they are proposing office towers, when vacancy rates are at 8 and 10 percent?
I guess the idea is not to wait til vacancy is 3% and then get the ball rolling.
The time span between coming up with a concept, planning, building permission, and building is years... so they have to plan ahead!
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Old January 23rd, 2006, 04:57 AM   #266
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Sorry for my asking but what exactly were vacancy rates when this bay-adelaide place's construction was halted?
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Old January 23rd, 2006, 05:18 AM   #267
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20%
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Old January 23rd, 2006, 06:59 AM   #268
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SQ4R
How is it that they are proposing office towers, when vacancy rates are at 8 and 10 percent?
Vacancy rates are at 8-10, however, there are no large block spaces available. There are now companies looking for large blocks of space that they can adjust to their needs. This combined with low vacancy rates will result in at least a couple new towers going up.
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Old January 24th, 2006, 01:50 AM   #269
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class A vancancy rate is even lower and there alot of companies ,law firms looking for large blocks of space in the downtown core
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Old January 26th, 2006, 02:47 AM   #270
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18 Yonge / Pinnacle

Jan. 17. 2006


Is that the sales centre for Maple Leaf Square (twin 500fters) beside ACC?
The units should be selling like hotcakes. Star said 80% sold, but you never know with the Condo Section

RoCP?



Jan.24.2006


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Old January 26th, 2006, 03:11 AM   #271
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correct skybeam ,that is the sales office for maple leaf square.the second tower will be released in a couple of weeks and it should sell fast.


it looks like infinity is being topped off as well(bottom right corner of first pic)
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Old January 26th, 2006, 03:21 AM   #272
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[QUOTE=Skybean]18 Yonge / Pinnacle

Jan. 17. 2006



the empty piece of land across the street from mapleleaf square sales office
is 25 york street and is proposed for an office tower by menkes dev.they also
recently purchased the larger piece of land below it in the pic,from fairmont hotels.
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Last edited by G_DOG; January 27th, 2006 at 12:45 AM.
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Old January 26th, 2006, 03:27 AM   #273
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That would be beautiful......all that empty space will be gone
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Old January 26th, 2006, 06:03 AM   #274
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^have you not seen the crap architecture Menkes builds though
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Old January 26th, 2006, 03:24 PM   #275
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SKYBEAN:
is that high angle pic of Union Station yours? If it is, can I have your permission to mess with it?

I've been trying to get the deaf ears involved in the Union Station Precinct Study to listen to some ideas re: redevelopment of the trainshed. Picture is worth a thousand words.
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Old January 26th, 2006, 09:27 PM   #276
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This is not really an update, per se, of Number One Yorkville, as I imagine construction
is close to completion... but here are a couple of pix I just took of the finished product.
Looking very attractive, I must say....





Also for anyone interested, a pic from a couple days ago of the Canadian
Opera Company operahouse..

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Old January 27th, 2006, 01:12 AM   #277
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@elliot

1. Why do you not accept PMs?

2. The photo is not mine. Rather it is from a photo sharing webby. The photographer has it listed as "copyright, all rights reserved" yet I still posted it here. So I guess, modify at your own risk. But I certainly won't be the one to tell.

Regards,

Skybean.
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Old January 27th, 2006, 01:21 AM   #278
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@ Taller, Better, I believe that 18 Yorkville is completed for quite some time now but great pics nonetheless.

And that high angle shot overlooking the area around the ACC will look amazing in 10 years with probably every parking lot filled up or put to use. This area might even be called "Financial District South" when completed with all these office and mixed-use developments going on. ...If only the Gardiner was torn down, then the walk between the cannon of buildings would be quite amazing.
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Old January 27th, 2006, 01:38 AM   #279
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New rendering of the Four Seasons Development with siteplan:








Description of Proposal

The development proposal is for a mixed-use development consisting of two buildings, a 205 metre (55-storey) hotel-residential tower at the northeast corner of Bay Street and Yorkville Avenue and a 125 metre (30-storey) residential tower on the south side of Scollard Street east of Bay Street. The floor plate for the hotel portion is 1,225 square metres and above that, the residential portion of the tower has a step back of 4.6 m along the east and west walls and a floor plate of approximately 955 square metres. The floor plate for the 30-storey building is approximately 735 square metres up to the 8th storey, stepping back to 665 square metres above that height.

The at-grade street frontages of the podium building along Bay Street and Yorkville Avenue consist of retail uses along both frontages and the hotel lobby would open onto both Bay Street and an internal courtyard. The lobby for the 30-storey building would also open onto Scollard Street. The residential lobby of the 55-storey building would also open onto the internal courtyard.

The 55-storey tower would sit atop a terraced 6-storey podium building, which would occupy the entire Bay Street frontage on the site. The two towers would be linked together with a central access courtyard at grade, as well as by a pedestrian bridge at the 6th storey level.

The 55-storey tower would comprise of a 23-storey, 265-room hotel and the remaining 32-stories above the hotel floors consist of 150-unit residential tower. The second to the fifth floors would accommodate ballrooms, banquet rooms and meeting rooms for the hotel. At the sixth floor level, there would be a fitness facility and a swimming pool on a rooftop terrace overlooking Scollard Street. The 30-storey tower would contain 180 units.

Vehicular access would be provided from both Yorkville Avenue and Scollard Street. The internal courtyard would provide access to drop-off areas for the hotel lobby and the two residential towers. Ramp access to a four level underground garage would be located in the northwest corner of the courtyard. The 1st level of parking will contain the limousine/taxi waiting area. Loading would be located within the podium building facing Scollard Street.
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Old January 27th, 2006, 01:39 AM   #280
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the met and young and ellington? those are some kick ass buildings
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