Menkes Developments Ltd. has acquired an interest in an 18-storey heritage office building at 320 Bay Street in Toronto owned by TD Greystone Asset Management and will begin a “major restoration” of the property.
Located at the southwest corner of Bay and Adelaide Streets, the site has historically been known as the Canada Permanent Trust Building. It was designed by Canadian architect Henry Sproatt and constructed in the late 1920s.
320 Bay Street is the first heritage building in Menkes’ portfolio.
Menkes says the renovations will improve the quality and service of the space, while preserving its history and architectural elements. The revitalization of the 270,000-square-foot space will include significant electrical and mechanical upgrades as well as an “exciting reimagination” of the building at street level.
“Unique place” in Toronto office market
“We think this development will have a unique place in the market, as there is nothing like it in the core right now,” said Peter Menkes, the president of commercial/industrial at Menkes, in the release. “It will offer a cutting-edge work environment, redesigned to meet the growing demand for creative office space in Toronto, and will allow companies to occupy a historical, landmark property.
“Menkes does not currently have a heritage building in its office portfolio, so this is very exciting for us.”
The company did not release financial details of the transaction.
The renovation of 320 Bay Street will add much-needed upgraded office supply in the downtown Toronto Financial District, where vacancy is currently running at or below two per cent. Menkes said the project is designed to appeal to the city’s rapidly growing tech sector, in which businesses continue to seek out high-quality downtown office spaces.
The revitalization will take place over the next 12-18 months, with occupancy scheduled for 2020.
Major restoration in 1992
“On behalf of our institutional clients, TD Greystone would like to thank and commend Triovest Realty Advisors for its exceptional management of 320 Bay Street since 2010,” said Jeff Tripp, TD Greystone’s managing director of real estate investments, in the release.
“With this transaction, we are extremely excited to embark on the next phase for 320 Bay and broaden our relationship with Menkes.”
A 2017 information brochure issued by Triovest said the building underwent an extensive renovation which was concluded in 1992, including the restoration of many of the building’s historic features. The work also added about 80,000 square feet to the building’s leasable area.
“The building’s art deco exterior is a combination of splendid limestone cladding and granite, with ornate gargoyles adorning the peaks, looking out upon Bay Street. The building’s interior features a richly decorated grand banking hall, intricate brass plate detailing and brass cladded elevators,” says the brochure.
The building is the former headquarters of CIBC Mellon. The asset servicing provider moved and consolidated its 900-or-so employees into newly-constructed space at the One York tower, at the corner of York and Harbour streets, in mid-2017. The 35-floor, 800,000-square foot One York tower is also owned by Menkes.
At the time CIBC Mellon vacated 320 Bay Street, Triovest’s marketing brochure listed about 120,000 square feet of vacancy.
Menkes Developments Ltd. is a fully integrated real estate company involved in the construction, ownership and management of office, industrial, retail and residential properties. Founded in 1954, it is one of the largest private developers in Canada, focused mainly in the Greater Toronto Area.
Past projects include two major projects in Toronto’s South Core district, 25 York (TELUS House) office tower and the two million-square-foot One York commercial retail complex, as well as Empress Walk entertainment, shopping and residential complex in North York City Centre.
The company’s latest project, Sugar Wharf, is a waterfront community on an 11.5-acre site in downtown Toronto anchored by a new two-acre park.
About TD Greystone
TD Greystone Asset Management (TD Greystone) is an institutional money manager based in Regina, with additional offices in Toronto, Winnipeg and Hong Kong. TD Greystone manages more than $35 billion on behalf of institutional clients across Canada.
TD Greystone offers a range of multi-asset class solutions with in-house teams covering fixed income, Canadian equities, U.S. equities, international equities, real estate, mortgages and infrastructure.