Property Biz Canada

Trophy assets dominate Vancouver 2017 sales


As the Vancouver region closes out what is expected to be a record year for commercial property sales, a list of the top transactions for the year shows some mega-trophy assets changing hands across retail, office and land sectors, according to details provided by Altus Group.

Downtown Vancouver. (Google Street View image)

Downtown Vancouver. (Google Street View image)

Through the first three quarters of 2017, investment sales for the region totalled $10.25 billion, according to Altus Group’s Vancouver Investment Transaction Stats – Q3. Last year set the record with a total of about $12.5 billion in deals, meaning only about $2.2-billion remained to close the gap in the final quarter of this year.

In 2017’s largest commercial deal so far, QuadReal Property Group bought Oakridge Centre shopping mall and property in Vancouver from Ivanhoé Cambridge. Completed in February, the $961-million deal was parsed into two transactions: 50 per cent in the form of a share sale and 50 per cent in the form of a market sale, according to the transaction summary.

Next on the list of market sales was the deal for Metrotown I and II office towers in Burnaby on Kingsway. The April deal, worth $274 million, saw the towers purchased by the Metrotower I Holding Group and Metrotower II Holding Group.

Cadillac Fairview portfolio sale

Also earning several spots on the list was Cadillac Fairview’s sale in February of a 50-per cent-interest in its Vancouver real estate portfolio to the Ontario Pension Board and the Workplace Safety and Insurance Board. The portfolio sale included downtown Vancouver’s Waterfront Centre, for an estimated $182.4 million, according to Altus Group. 

Most of the largest deals took place early in the year in Vancouver, in Burnaby and cities north of the Fraser River nearest to Vancouver’s core, said Paul Richter, director of data solutions with Altus Analytics at Altus Group, who compiled the list.

He noted that his list did not include share sales.  

As for apartments, Richter highlighted the sale of Southview Gardens in Vancouver, which sold in March to Vancouver-based Coromandel Properties for $72-million.

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“That’s a known developer in town,” Richter said. “They acquired a bunch of townhouses there and we classified that as an apartment transaction, but I think in the long term, three to five years, or maybe a little further out, that there’s a redevelopment play there.”

The remaining top market deals included:

Granville Square office tower at 200 Granville St. (part of Cadillac Fairview’s 50 per cent stake in its Vancouver portfolio, sold to Ontario Pension Board and the Workplace Safety and Insurance Board), worth an estimated $157.5 million.

PriceWaterhouseCoopersPlace on Howe Street in downtown Vancouver (also part of the Cadillac Fairview portfolio sold to Ontario Pension Board and the Workplace Safety and Insurance Board) for an estimated $92 million.

-A portfolio of residential land at several addresses in Burnaby, including 4502 Dawson St., which sold in June for $152 million to Aoyuan Property Group.

-ICI land in North Vancouver at several addresses — including 5, 10 and 25 Senator Rd. — which sold in May for $115 million to Wesbild Holdings Ltd.

-Residential land at 2125 Eddington Dr. in Vancouver, which sold in March for $115 million to a company called 2125 Eddington Holdings.

– Columbia Square Plaza in New Westminster, a retail property sold to Kunyuan International for $97 million in June.

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Evan Duggan

About the Author ()

Evan is a freelance multimedia journalist in Vancouver, who has covered business, news, politics and more. In addition to RENX, his work has appeared in the Vancouver Sun, B-Magazine, The Tyee, Elite Daily, Al Jazeera English and others. He can be reached at evan@evanduggan.com

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