It&#x27s the age of startups and the tech culture, and for businesses in this industry, this means massive growth and expansion. That&#x27s why it came as no surprise when tech giant Amazon announced the search for a global city that would be home to their second headquarters, since then dubbed as €˜HQ2&#x27. This news sent North American cities on both sides of the border scrambling in the race, offering proposals and potential properties that would satisfy key requirements in tech real estate: floor area for innovation, location amidst a healthy business climate, and accessibility to the tech giant&#x27s talent pool. Being the only Canadian city that made it to the recently announced top 20 cut, property investment advisors are now closely watching Toronto&#x27s status in the race. Offering a bid that capitalizes not only on the vitality of Canada&#x27s undoubtedly most populated city and thriving business district, but also on that of the entire region, Toronto&#x27s proposal brings into play 10 regional sites that can be developed into urban-slash-tech campuses to meet the tech giant&#x27s growth requirements. But what does landing HQ2 mean for the Toronto region&#x27s commercial real estate market? It&#x27s time to find out exactly what property owners and investors in the area are celebrating: All-Time Low Office Space Vacancy Rates The possibility of Amazon&#x27s HQ2 landing in Toronto means a sharp decline in office space vacancies. Toronto has grown to be a leading business district in the country, and with Amazon setting its sights to settle in, office spaces aren&#x27t just expected to quickly fill up; their property values are also likely to increase due to the demand and increasing foot traffic, which means gains for commercial real estate investors in the area. Property investment advisors in Canada note that Amazon is looking to occupy hundreds and thousands of square feet to provide ample space for innovation – and Toronto&#x27s bid includes not just one site, but several satellite spaces spread throughout an urban center (downtown Mississauga and Markham, the Vaughan Metropolitan Centre, Ajax, Brampton, Burlington, Oakville, Pickering, and Milton).This means higher occupancy rates and even new developments – and Amazon isn&#x27t the only one looking to move in. Toronto already has a growing tech scene, so it won&#x27t be a surprise if other tech companies also land in the city. Not wanting to be left behind in the wake of Amazon&#x27s increased global reach, these companies following suit are also likely to be eyeing both prized and up-and-coming commercial real estate locations to set up shop in. City Centre Transformations Toronto&#x27s bid sites include Mississauga, Markham, and Vaughan – up-and-coming urban centres that have been undergoing massive transformations for a while now, such as the recently opened TTC Line 1 subway extension that now runs through the York Region. These developments caused an influx of proposed and currently in construction offices, retail spaces, and condos, so it won&#x27t be a surprise that the possibility of an Amazon office in the area will cause these numbers to surge even more. With these numbers poised for growth, property owners and investors in the area could easily see vast improvements in their investment. Even without the potential arrival of Amazon, these relatively new urban centres are set to produce massive returns for investment from these recent developments alone. And with the likelihood of Toronto and its surrounding cities playing host to one of the world&#x27s largest tech companies, it&#x27s only a matter of time before commercial real estate assets and investments in surrounding areas like Ajax, Burlington, Oakville, Milton, and more reap drastically increased returns. Ripple Effect The growth of Amazon has long impacted brick-and-mortar retail, but its proposed HQ2 in Toronto could also signal a slight shift in commercial real estate investments. Moving away from traditional retail spaces, lucrative investments can now include semi-industrial real estate, such as warehouses and distribution centres. Property investment advisors in Canada note that investing in or co-owning a portion of these could yield significant returns in the near future, as online retail continues to thrive, and retailers like Amazon continue to lead the change. Apart from commercial real estate growth, housing HQ2 in Toronto could also mean more jobs and influx of talent into the city and the surrounding region. While increased value is great for resale, this could also signal an even steeper climb in the housing market and rent. At the end of the day, if Toronto were to welcome Amazon&#x27s HQ2, real estate investors will definitely share in the market&#x27s gains. Now all the city has to do is to ensure infrastructure development, improved public transit, and affordable living standards.

Thinking of investing in commercial properties lining up along the GTA? Don&#x27t wait another second – get ahead of the commercial real estate boom and the Amazon Effect. Book a consultation with our property investment advisors today.

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