Property Biz Canada

Fortress adds SkyCity partner, sells Oakville land


Fortress Real Developments Inc. has added Edenshaw Developments Ltd. as a co-developer of SkyCity Centre Winnipeg, which will break ground this spring.

SkyCity Edenshaw“Fortress and Edenshaw had been looking at working together for several years and we believed David and his team would be perfect for SkyCity, given David’s connection to Manitoba and his relationship working with builder EllisDon in Toronto at Edenshaw’s Chaz Yorkville luxury condominium,” Fortress senior vice-president Ben Myers said of Edenshaw president and chief executive officer David McComb, a former Winnipeg resident.

“Given the scale and complexity of SkyCity Winnipeg, Fortress felt David’s expertise in contracts, value-engineering, sales and marketing, and management of large scale multi-use development projects was a necessary addition to ensure the project gets financed and built on time and on budget.”

SkyCity will be Manitoba’s tallest building

The 45-storey SkyCity Centre Winnipeg in downtown’s Sports, Hospitality and Entertainment District (SHED) district will be Manitoba’s tallest building. It will include 380 residential condominium units, 30,000 square feet of amenity space, 60,000 square feet dedicated to office condos and 20,000 square feet of retail at grade.

There will be a variety of residential suite sizes, with prices starting in the $200,000s. Occupancy is expected in late 2019 or early 2020. The units will feature nine-foot ceilings, hardwood flooring, European-style kitchens with stainless steel appliances and balconies with glass railings.

The SkyActive level will include a gym and fitness area as well as facilities for outdoor entertaining and relaxation. The SkyLounge will provide a rooftop dining room, games room, movie theatre, bar area, fireplaces and outdoor terrace seating.

SkyCity Centre Winnipeg was brought to market in the fall of 2015 and residential sales have surpassed 50 per cent of capacity.

“We are ecstatic about the sales to date and the commitment Winnipeggers have made to changing their skyline,” said Myers. “We hope this announcement will reinvigorate prospective buyers that are on the fence and get them to see their future living in Winnipeg’s signature mixed-use condominium tower.”

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Myers added that lower pre-construction pricing will expire shortly.

A public launch of “Offices at SkyCity” is planned for later this month. The class-A space will be located on the sixth floor, with units ranging from about 950 square feet to more than 2,000. They’ll be available in the mid-$400,000 range.

Retail pre-leasing hasn’t yet begun.

Fortress and Kingridge sell Oakville property

Toronto-based Fortress also announced it, along with partner Kingridge Developments, has sold a six-acre parcel of land just north of the Queen Elizabeth Way at 1099 and 1105 Bronte Rd. in Oakville to Halton Region.

The two companies acquired the land in 2015 for an undisclosed price and had planned to construct five buildings on it, including retail stores, office condos and self-storage space.

“The Region was looking to expand on their land holdings in the area and the negotiated price made sense for Fortress, Kingridge and our other financial partners,” said Myers, who wouldn’t reveal the selling price.

Construction of a new $65-million Halton Regional Police Service headquarters began in the fall of 2015 near the just-sold site at 1151 Bronte Rd., and Myers said he assumed that the Region’s purchase was related to that. It’s anticipated the four-storey, 235,000-square-foot building will be up and running in July.

Fortress and Oakville-based Kingridge recently finished their nearby Kingridge Square project on a 4.95-acre property on Speers Road and have opportunities to purchase there, according to Myers.

“This completed office, commercial and medical condominium project in Oakville offers business owners the chance to own their own space instead of leasing,” he said. “Creative financing is available to fit-out and customize the suites.”

Other Fortress projects

Fortress has more than 20 projects under construction in Canada, 11 of which will be completed or occupied this year, with the potential for as many as 10 construction starts in 2017.

“We are launching seven projects for sale this year, including Woodbridge Park in Vaughan and the Manors of Mineola in Mississauga,” said Myers. “We have recently rolled out a new rental guarantee program for prospective buyers at our Capital Pointe development in Regina with Ai Guarantee Inc.

“We anticipate a number of significant land sales at sites that have received municipal planning approval recently, as we are looking to take advantage of the massive under-supply of available development sites in the Greater Toronto Area.”

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Steve McLean

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Steve McLean is a veteran writer, reporter, editor and communications specialist whose work has appeared in a wide variety of print and online outlets. He’s the author of the book Hot Canadian Bands and has taught reporting to college students.

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