Primecorp Primer Q4-2012 HighlightsYou can read the full version of the Primecorp Primer Q4-2012 (by clicking on this hyperlink). by Bruce Wolfgram, VP Office Leasing, Primecorp Commercial Realty Inc., Brokerage
1) Ottawa, in comparison to the rest of the continent, and especially the United States, is doing well from an overall business perspective. We continue to hold our own and are actually expanding in some sectors.
2) The Federal Government, in addition to building new buildings in Gatineau, will also occupy two large new buildings in Ottawa over the coming 24 months… 646,000 square feet at 90 Elgin Street downtown, and 269,100 square feet at 395 Terminal Avenue, which is the building being erected near the Via train station at the Queensway.
3) The vacancy rate in Ottawa’s downtown central business district, at approx 6%, is higher than it has been in over a decade. At times, we have seen the downtown vacancy rate drop to 3% or less. Although still considered a “landlord’s market” at anything below 8%, we are nonetheless enthusiastic since the current downtown market will bring additional options and increased negotiating leverage when we are negotiating for our clients.
4) Downtown Ottawa saw a number of significant lease transactions over the past several months with Borden Ladner Gervais, KPMG, and Ernst & Young all finalizing long term leases of 10 years or more (see “Recently Completed Deals” below.
5) Ottawa’s Byward Market area is the new hot place for start-ups (e.g., young companies under 3,000 square feet) to locate. Not only can companies find funky office space to lease but they can also work, live and play in the same area. This also fits well into the green lifestyle of many 20-somethings who choose not to own vehicles.
6) When Nortel Networks sold its huge west end campus to the Federal Government over a year ago, four large companies who were tenants within the complex then needed to find new accommodations. Three of these four companies (Avaya, Ericcson and Genband) have now done so, and are in the process of building out their new spaces in existing buildings in Kanata. The last company Ciena, who had in place the longest lease of all four companies, had also begun searching for new-build opportunities in the 300,000 square feet+ range. However, it now appears that Ciena could remain within the Nortel campus until 2019 as the Department of National Defence has not yet firmed up its longterm move-in schedule.
7) What happens to Research in Motion (RIM) over the next year has implications for more than just Canada’s high tech sector. RIM occupies over 600,000 square feet of space in Ottawa. It is safe to assume that Ottawa landlords are hoping that RIM’s upcoming Blackberry 10 operating system will be a winner!
Ottawa Office Market Newsletter for Tenants