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Mission District: Land investment opportunity in Calgary’s emerging residential and retail development

Calgary’s high incomes and low prices make it the most affordable city in the world for housing

An acre of prime mixed-use development land in the City of Vancouver is now eclipsing $20 million per acre and similar prices are being seen in Toronto, while the average composite home price in both cities is touching or surpassing $1 million.

Condo apartments in the Greater Vancouver hit a benchmark price of more than $737,000 in June and Toronto condo prices were at $683,000.

In comparison, the composite home price in Calgary is now $441,500 and even downtown condominiums sell for less than $350,000.

Prime development land in the city is a fraction of the cost in either Vancouver or Toronto.

Calgary’s high incomes and low prices make it the most affordable city in the world for housing, according to an international survey by U.K-based Online Mortgage Services. Calgary home prices are up 11% from a year ago, yet remain $234,000 less than the Canadian average.

Yet, Calgary has the momentum for dramatic demand and condominium price increases, based partly on the recent surge in oil prices to US$75 per barrel. The Conference Board of Canada now projects Alberta will lead all provinces in economic growth this year, while immigration to the city is forecast to surge as travel restrictions end.

Calgary condominium sales soared 74% in the first quarter from Q1 2020 to the highest sales level since 2018, according to Altus Group.

June housing sales in Calgary hit 2,925 transactions, the highest June on record, reports the Calgary Real Estate Board, and average condominium price in the city centre surged 7.2% from a year earlier.

Meanwhile, Alberta consumer retail sales topped $7.4 billion per month In April, up 53% from a year earlier, according to Statistics Canada.

Calgary retail real estate also rebounded, with 28 transactions totaling $141 million in Q1 2021, nearly tripling in value compared to Q1 of last year, Altus Group reports.

Calgary’s land sector saw the strongest performance in Q1 2021, making up 46% of the investment total for the quarter.

An example of the latest ­ - and perhaps greatest - development opportunity is a unique land assembly in Calgary’s trendy Mission district. The 1.35-acre (59,594 square foot) site is already zoned for a mixed-use multi-unit residential and retail development, and has excellent holding income with nine contiguous detached houses generating consisting rental cash flow.

Listed at $7.8 million, the land features City of Calgary DC6D2012 zoning that allows for a variety of potential development configurations as residential or commercial.

“This is direct-control zoning for the developer,” explains the seller.

The zoning has no density requirements and allows building heights of 67.26 feet (20.5 metres).

The seller suggests the location lends itself to use as a multi-family development with ground-level retail. Offers of not less than two adjacent parcels at a time at $2 Million will be considered.

The 1.35 acres is in the affluent heart of Alberta’s biggest city. The Mission district, with an average household income of $162,003 and 72,000 residents, is packed with brew pubs, restaurants, grocery outlets, shops and services. The Calgary Stampede grounds, the Saddledome, home of the Calgary Flames, and the BMO convention centre are literally around the corner from the site.

The land is also close to Calgary’s LRT system, which is expanding under the $1.53 billion Green Line expansion, the largest infrastructure project ever undertaken in Calgary.

It is rare that an open-zoning site of more than an acre becomes available in Calgary’s hot Mission district and the seller is expecting multiple-offers from developers.

Listing highlights:

  • Land size: 1.35 acres
  • Location: Mission Road, Mission District
  • City: Calgary, Alberta
  • Price: $7.8 million

For complete details, including a brochure, contact Sandy Leung by phone at 778.800.0665, or via email at