Toronto-based real estate company Arkfield Developments has several multifamily developments in its pipeline, but a particular area of interest is a cluster of properties along the Yonge Street corridor.
Its real estate portfolio comprises about four million square feet of residential density with an estimated completion value of $3.5 billion.
CEO Ramin Jalalpour said Arkfield’s portfolio is mainly focused on the Greater Toronto Area, with one asset in Hamilton and one in Ottawa.
“We have 14 projects under various stages of development,” he told RENX. “The highlight of our portfolio is our condominium portfolio on Yonge Street. We have seven towers on Yonge Street in North York between Sheppard and Steeles, which adds up to two million square feet.
“We find North York as a very multicultural and diversified area. In our opinion, it’s the most multicultural and diversified neighbourhood in the entire GTA. It consists of a lot of landmarks, local businesses. They have developed the area into a hub of multiculturalism.”
Out of Arkfield's 14 projects, two have been completed (Maple Park and Duchess of Oxford in Richmond Hill) and one will be completed soon (Catherine Northplace in Hamilton).
Cluster of Yonge Street developments
Two are purpose-built rental developments and the remainder are planned to offer for sale units.
Arkfield currently has partners with three of its projects.
Some of the main projects on the go include a cluster along Yonge Street:
- 6080 Yonge is a 246-unit condo project at the corner of Yonge Street and Homewood Avenue in Toronto. It is a 14-storey, primarily residential development within walking distance to two planned subway stations at Cummer Avenue and Steeles Avenue. The site’s central location in North York is supported by local retail businesses, schools, greenspace and other city amenities;
- 6200 Yonge is a 25-storey, 347-unit condo project steps from Centerpoint Mall. The site is within walking distance to the planned Steeles subway station. The Willowdale neighborhood offers residents nearby greenspace, schools, restaurants and retail businesses; and
- Yonge & Churchill Residences consists of 45- and 33-storey towers with over 860 units. The project is minutes away from the downtown Toronto as well as the northern GTA suburbs. The site is in the hub of the bustling hospitality industry, surrounded by unique restaurants, artisanal coffee shops, popular grocery chains and with good public and road transportation access.
The company was founded as a family business in 2016 with a small group of individuals and recently rebranded as Arkfield from its former name A1 Capital.
“One of the values of the company that we pride ourselves in is that resilience and ambition that the entire team kind of adheres to,” said chief investment officer Rouh Ramezani. “We are an integrated real estate group focused on ground-up development and value-add asset management. That’s our focus.
"We are doing the full suite of real estate development in-house and we operate as a private equity platform as well.
“And we think long-term when we think about return, and we think delivering the right product and caring about all stakeholders including investors, community, buyers, owners over the long term would lead to higher returns.”
Projects spaced out over several years
Ramezani said the portfolio is set up to provide approved zoned land spread out over the next few years and as the developments get approved they will go through the pre-sale process.
“We were in the portfolio-gathering mode, if you will, in the past few years to step up this portfolio on Yonge Street and we will take them to construction as they get approved,” he said.
Jalalpour said the company is “always looking to buy nice projects which would be good assets and good investments for our partners and investors, and also good product for the owners and the buyers in the community and the residents.
“We are currently very focused in the GTA."
For potential future low-rise projects, he said the company might look a bit further afield to the fringes of the GTA.
Ramezani noted that access to transit is a key factor in the sites the company chooses.
“We look at sites in the GTA where there is existing or planned transit in the near future,” he said.
A soft market, with potential
Jalalpour described the current real estate market in Toronto as soft for condos. However, he believes there is a solid market for good, well-situated housing.
“The right product in the right neighbourhood would still have its own buyers and customers," he said. "We launched 6080 very recently and we think it was a perfect addition to this neighbourhood. And we’re seeing a lot of good attraction and attention to this project.
"We’re seeing a lot of interest on this project. So it’s still showing that the right project in the right neighbourhood . . . it will still sell.”