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Residential land selling for up to $83 million per acre


 Land value works out to $83,000 for each condo in the new Vancouver House tower.
- Westbank

“Something out of whack here,” real estate consultant says

The 2.2-acre site of the new Vancouver House residential tower cost the developer, Westbank, $32.4 million, or more than $15 million per acre and it was not the most expensive residential land sale in Metro Vancouver so far this year. That would be the $83.5 million paid by Wall Financial for a site on Alberni Street in Vancouver’s West End that measures less than acre.
“[Residential] land remains the most the most sought-after commercial real estate investment in British Columbia,” notes Avison Young in a mid-year report on commercial real estate sales.
But one real estate commentator believes the white-hot demand for residential reveals an economic fault line, because much more is being spent building condominiums than on places for people to work or learn.
Residential land is clearly leading B.C.’s investment curve. Just the top five residential land sales across Metro Vancouver in the first half of this year, at a total of $255.6 million, were worth more than all B.C.’s industrial property sales, at $163 million, and accounted for 30 per cent of the total commercial property transactions in the province.
Other notable sales of residential land, all aimed at high-density development, include $69 million paid by Canada Sunrise Development Corp. for 4.91 acres on Number 3 Road in Richmond and the $20.7 million sale of 1.1 acres in Burnaby's Metrotown area. In what is seen as a long-term residential land banking hold, Wesbild Holdings and two partners paid $50 million for 87.4 acres in Coquitlam.
The higher land values may signal rising prices for future multi-family housing units. The land costs for Vancouver House, for example, translates into $83,000 for each of the 388 condominiums in the twisting tower that will rise at the north end of the Granville Street Bridge.
Real estate buyers pay much less for non-residential land, the Avison Young report reveals. Metro Vancouver industrial land, for example, sold for between $1 million to $2 million per acre this year, while the biggest sale of commercially-zoned land pencils out to $1.45 million per acre for a 40-acre site near Burnaby’s Brentwood Skytrain station.
“There is something out of whack here,” commented real estate consultant Ozzie Jurock, who hosted a Real Estate Outlook 2015 conference in Vancouver Sept. 13. Jurock noted that in the first seven months of this year, Metro Vancouver residential permits reached $2.9 billion, while total non-residential construction was $1.2 billion. Across the province, home building permit values are currently outstripping non-residential permits by a ratio of four to one.
“Residential construction this far ahead of non-residential reflects a weak pattern of business investment that could stunt economic growth,” Jurock said. “In a truly robust economy, more investments would be made in commercial buildings and infrastructure than in condos.”

50 per cent stake sold in new Tsawwassen Commons mall



Tsawwassen Commons completes in 2016 as part of B.C.'s
second-biggest retail complex

Backers of a retail complex that will help form the second-biggest shopping centre in British Columbia have taken on a 50 per cent shareholder.
GVest Private Equity LP, managed by Calgary-based Gracop Capital Advisors, has forged a partnership with Toronto-based Forgestone Capital Management to help finance and complete the 550,000-square-foot Tsawwassen Commons, which is now under construction in South Delta.
PDG Investments is developing and managing the leasing of the project with FORM Retail Advisors, a Vancouver-based retail broker.
Located on 52 acres of Tsawwassen First Nation lands on Highway 17, Tsawwassen Commons will provide outdoor retail space and include a blend of national, regional and independent retailers, big-box outlets, restaurants and financial services.
Tsawwassen Commons is being developed adjacent to Ivanhoe Cambridge's
1.2 million–square-foot Tsawwassen Mills, which will have 16 major anchor retailers, smaller retail shops, a 1,100 seat food court, restaurants and retail kiosks. The Tsawwassen Mills project is modelled on the CrossIron Mills and Vaughan Mills in the Greater Calgary and Greater Toronto areas.  
When complete, the two Tsawassen malls will represent the second-largest shopping centre complex in B.C., just slightly smaller in leaseable retail space than the 1.71 million-square-foot Metropolis Metrotown complex in Burnaby.
While the cost of Forgestone’s equity stake has not been released, the total development cost for Tsawwassen Commons is $160 million, according to GVest.
The project will be complete in spring 2016.
Toronto-based MacKenzie-Goulais Inc. has been retained by the partnership as retail advisors overseeing the leasing program. In addition to confirmed tenants Walmart and Rona, the project is already 50% pre-leased, with 78% of the retail area under letter of intent or offers to lease, according to GVest president Tim Heavenor.

Done deals updated for September



Kelowna apartment building sold for $141,000 per door.
- Colliers

Kelowna apartment building sells for $8.2 million

Colliers International of Kelowna agent Jeff Hudson reports the sale of the six-storey, 58-unit concrete Roth Towers apartment building in Kelowna. The Pandosy Street complex, close to downtown and Lake Okanagan, fetched $141,000 per door at a selling price of $8.22 million. The sale was among a number of multi-family transactions across the province last month.

From: Sutton West Coast Realty, Harrison Hot Springs, B.C. Sutton agents Fred and Linda Marks with Peter Mozek of Re/Max Progroup sold the following:
Deal: Husky gas station with mini mall, post office and accommodation, 150 Mile House, B.C. Price: $1.95 million

From: Colliers International, Vancouver. Colliers agent Matt Saunders sold the following:
Deal: 16,348-square-foot site at 275 Kingsway, Vancouver. Price: $2.75 million.

From: NAI Commercial, Vancouver, reports the following sales:
Deal: 42-unit rental apartment building, Ash Street, New Westminster. Sold by NAI agents Terry Harding, Jackson Tang and Brandon Harding. Price: $5.72 million.
Deal: 8-unit apartment building, Manitoba Street, New Westminster.
Price: $1.54 million.
NAI agent Cole Maedel sold the following:
Deal: 11,252-square-foot office building on 22,200-square-foot site, Westminster Highway, Richmond. Price: $3.21 million.
NAI agents Angie and Don MacDonald sold the following:
Deal: 7,200-square-foot retail strip mall on 14,388-square-foot lot on 128 Street, Surrey. Price: $3.9 million.
From: -William Wright Commercial Real Estate Services, Vancouver. William Wright agent Cory Wright reports the following transaction:
Deal: Purchase of the Society restaurant complex, Hamilton Street, Yaletown, Vancouver, on behalf of a client. Price: $2.68 million.

From: Frontline Real Estate Services, Surrey. Frontline agents Joe Lehman and Garth White, with Colliers agents Chris Brewster and Chris Morrison, sold the following:
Deal: 10,436-square-foot industrial building, 134A Street, Surrey. Price: $1.58 million.
From: Melcor Real Estate Investment Trust, Toronto. Melcor reports the following acquisitions:
Deal: 42,586-square-foot Market Mall in Regina, and Phase 3 of Kingsview Market, an 11,555-square-foot mall in Airdrie, Alberta. Price: $13.5 million.
Deal: 24,432-square-foot office building, 107 Avenue, Edmonton. Price: $5.5 million.

From: CBRE National Apartment Group, Edmonton. CBRE agent Bradley Gingerich reports the following sale:
Deal: 24-suite rental apartment building, 95 Avenue, Edmonton, at $134,375 per suite. Price: $3.22 million.

From: HQ Commercial, Vancouver. HQ agents David and Mark Goodman report the following sales:
Deal: 11-unit apartment rental building, East Boulevard, Kerrisdale, Vancouver at more than $425,000 per suite. Price: $4.71 million.
Deal: 13-unit apartment rental building, Andrews Avenue, North Vancouver. Price: $2.8 million.

From: London Pacific Property Agents Inc., Vancouver.  London Pacific agent Ben Williams sold the following;
Deal: Nine-lot assembly totaling 50,196 square feet, Cottonwood Avenue, Coquitlam.  Price: $6.65 million.

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Stadium puts Regina in play



With a new football stadium underway and the retail and industrial markets roaring, Regina has seen $332 million in building permits issued this year, but the office and residential sectors are facing a modest glut.
In July alone, $66.9 million in building permits were issued in Saskatchewan’s capital, including the construction of a new laundry plant in the Ross Industrial area and two new townhouse developments, one in Greens on Gardiner and one in Harbour Landing.
“New single-family home starts may be down, but significant increases in nearly all other types of housing show that our economy continues to grow,” said Mayor Michael Fougere. “We’re also seeing that commercial, industrial, and institutional property owners are heavily investing in upgrading and altering their buildings.”
Leading the construction pace is the $278 million Mosaic stadium that will be the new home for the Canadian Football League’s Saskatchewan Roughriders.
Officials from the city, the province and the team were on hand as the first shovel went into the dirt at Evraz Place northwest of downtown Regina in mid-June.
Sean Hamblin, district manager of construction company PCL Management, said it would take a few months to notice any above-ground work at the site. The stadium is to be completed by August 2016.
The design calls for a 33,000-seat facility that can be expanded to hold 40,000 fans for special events.
The venue is being described as "roof ready,'' meaning a full cover could be added at a later date.
PCL said the Roughriders could play their first game in the new stadium in June 2017. Four tower cranes will be placed at the site for about 17 months.
The Mosaic stadium represents the first phase of the Regional Revitalization Initiative, with the stadium anchoring a development of housing, retail and commercial space.
The second phase— the Railyard Renewal Project—on 17.6 acres that was the former CP container yards in the heart of Regina, will complement the historic location, with stores, restaurants, and entertainment linked to downtown Regina and neighbouring areas by a pedestrian walkway. That $500 million re-development there is expected to start next years.
For more on Regina’s commercial real estate market, see the September issue of Western Investor

Done deals updated for August

Nat Bosa buys Victoria’s Empress hotel

Bosa Development of Vancouver has bought Victoria’s iconic Fairmont Empress hotel, owner Nat Bosa has confirmed.
Caisse de dépôt et placement du Québec subsidiary Ivanhoe Cambridge put the hotel up for sale on May 30 as part of a strategy to shed hotel assets.
Bosa would not disclose the financial terms of his transaction to buy the 109-room Empress, but the property is assessed at $89.9 million, making it one of the most valuable properties in Victoria. Western Investor industry sources estimate the sale price at from $95 million to $110 million.
Bosa said the landmark hotel will undergo about $30 million in renovation and upgrades.

From: Jones Lang LaSalle (JLL) Specialized Assets, Vancouver. JLL agents Mark Lester and Allan Johnson report the following sales:
Deal: 21-unit Carmel Cove Resort, Shuswap Lake waterfront with detached lodges and boat dock, Shuswap. Sold under a court order. Price: $4.1 million.
Deal: Island West Resort, Ucluelet. Includes a 19-room motel, 84-slip marina, a pub and camping sites. Sold under a court-ordered sale to an investor from mainland China. Price: $2.1 million.
Deal: 31,000-acre Clover Farm, a cattle ranch near Fort St. John. Price: $15.3 million.

From: NAI Commercial, Vancouver. NAI agents Aleem Thaver and Rob DesBrisay report the following sale:
Deal: 10,622-square-foot retail plaza, East Broadway, Vancouver. Price: $6.3 million.
NAI agents Gary Haukeland and J.D. Murray sold the following:
Deal: 396-acre development site, Sechelt Inlet Road, Sechelt, B.C. Price: $11.75 million.
From: CBRE Commercial, Edmonton. CBRE senior vice-president Bradley Gingerich reports the following sale:
Deal: 22,211-square-foot site, zoned for mixed-use including 103 units of housing, on 106 Street in downtown Edmonton. Price: ($200 per square foot) $4.44 million.
From: CBRE National Apartment Group, Edmonton. CBRE vice-president Bradley Gingerich reports the following sale:
Deal: 91-unit rental apartment building, 29 Avenue NW, Edmonton. Price ($142,308 per unit) $12.95 million.

From: Avison Young Commercial Real Estate, Vancouver.?Avison Young agents Rob Greer, Chris Wieser, Mark Hannah and Alex Messina sold the following:??
Deal: 33-unit rental apartment building, Winston House, at 1137 Bute Street, Vancouver. Price: $8.1 million.

From: City of Terrace. The city reports the following sale:
Deal: 1,056 acres of industrial land in Skeena Industrial Park, sold to China-based Qinhuangdao Economic Development Zone. Price: $11.8 million.

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Done deals update for July


 Sands Hotel, Davie Street, Vancouver.

The Best Western Sands Hotel, Davie Street, Vancouver, sold for $31million

 Done Deals is our monthly feature highlighting some of the major real estate transactions in Western Canada’s vibrant commercial real estate market.

Sands Hotel sells for $256,000 per room

The Best Western Plus Sands Hotel on Davie Street in Vancouver’s West End has sold for $31 million in a rare hotel sale in the city.
"This is a significant transaction in our market as hotels of this magnitude trade very sporadically in Metro Vancouver,” said Tony Letvinchuk, managing director of Macdonald Commercial Real Estate Services, which brokered the deal.
The vendor was R.P.B. Holdings Ltd. The property sold to an undisclosed local buyer. Dan Schulz of Macdonald Commercial, with Sunil Rekhi and Feroz Dean of Amex Fraseridge Realty, represented the buyer. The seller was unrepresented in the transaction.
The deal penciled out to $256,198 per room, one of the highest prices per hotel unit ever achieved in Vancouver, Shulz said, noting the deal, “highlights the continued strength of our investment market".
From: Re/Max Bill Goold Realty, Vancouver, Re/Max broker Bill Goold reports the following sale:
Deal: 21-unit apartment building, built in 1959 on West 39th Avenue, Kerrisdale, Vancouver. Sold for $327,310 per suite. Price: $6,873,500

From: NAI Commercial, Vancouver. NAI agents Terry Harding, Jackson Tang and Brandon Harding announce the following sales:
Deal: Two-storey, 28-year-old, 7,838-square-foot mixed-use commercial building, East 48th Avenue near Main Street, Vancouver. Price: $2.55 million.
Deal: 30-unit rental apartment building, Linden Avenue, Burnaby. Price: $4.7 million.

From: CBRE National Apartment Group, Vancouver. CBRE National Apartment Group agent Lance Coulson reports the following sales:
Deal: 633-unit, four-apartment building portfolio, with buildings in Burnaby, Surrey and Victoria. Sold for Boardwalk Real Estate Investment Trust to a Canadian pension fund. Price: $140 million.
Deal: 108-unit rental apartment complex, Tims Street, Abbotsford. Price: $10.30 million.
Deal: Three-storey, 39-unit rental apartment building, New Westminster. Price: $5.50 million.

From: Colliers Canada Vancouver. Colliers senior associate Matt Saunders announces the following sale:
Deal: 4,596-square-foot commercial building, Arbutus Street, Vancouver.
Assessed in 2014 at $2.81 million. Sold for $4 million.

From: Gaetz Realty Inc., Edmonton. Gaetz Realty owner/broker Bob Gaetz reports the following sale:
Deal: 6.6-acre industrial property, 159 Street and 137 Avenue, Edmonton.
Sold for a numbered Alberta investment group. Selling agent was Thomas Braun of Royal Park Realty, Edmonton. Price: $4.62 million.

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