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Burnaby office building sells for $112.5 million

Concert’s first acquisition in Brentwood seen as the highest price paid for a B.C. office property in the past two years
1795 Willingdon - No Text
1795 Willingdon Avenue, Burnaby: future development site with stable income in place. | Concert CREC

Metro Vancouver’s office market is “the strongest in Canada,” according to a new national survey, and a recent Burnaby purchase underlines the demand.

Concert’s CREC Commercial Fund LP has purchased a fully leased, three-story office building in the Brentwood neighbourhood of Burnaby. The 160,654 square foot complex sold for $112.5 million, considered the highest price paid for a regional office property in the past year.

The sale of the building, which is fully leased to B.C.’s Provincial Health Services Authority (PHSA), was announced May 30.  

The building, at 1795 Willingdon Avenue, is nestled within a hub of new residential and commercial developments, including The Amazing Brentwood – one of British Columbia’s largest mixed-use retail and resident developments.

“This is Concert’s first acquisition in the Brentwood neighbourhood and we’re excited to be part of this rapidly growing community as we further expand our commercial portfolio in B.C.,” said David Podmore, Concert’s president & CEO.  

The property sits on a 2.58-acre lot within the core area of the Brentwood Town Centre Development Plan, which identifies the site for high-density, mixed-use development consisting of residential and commercial uses.

The Brentwood Town Centre Skytrain Station is located two blocks south of the property.

“We’re very pleased to acquire this premium office property in one of the fastest growing areas of B.C. With a long-term, stable, government tenant in PHSA, this acquisition will contribute stable returns to both our portfolio and to our pension fund and institutional investors,” says Andrew Tong, Concert’s chief investment officer and managing director, CREC Commercial Fund LP.

“Vancouver’s office market is the strongest in Canada at present,” according to a national survey of commercial real estate released May 30 by Re/Max Commercial.

Metro Vancouver vacancy rates are trending down, sitting at 9.6 per cent in the first quarter of 2022, compared to 10 per cent during the same period in 2021, Re/Max found, noting that suburban markets continue to thrive.

Prior to the Brentwood sale, the highest prices paid for an office property in Metro Vancouver since January 2021 was $103 million for a new 120,000-square-foot building at 1077 Great Northern Way in March 2021, and the $93 million paid for the 61,300-square-foot 815 Hornby Street tower in May of 2021, according to a mid-2021 survey by Avison Young. Like the Brentwood purchase, the Hornby Street property is considered a land development play.