GWL Realty Advisors has acquired a newly constructed class-A multi-unit residential building with ancillary retail space in Edmonton from BCM Developments Ltd. for use as an apartment building on behalf of an undisclosed investor client for an undisclosed price.
The Station on Whyte, formerly a condominium development known as Fuzion on Whyte, features 105 condo-style suites. There are in-suite washers and dryers, dishwashers, air conditioning, balconies and modern finishes. Rental rates start at $1,450 for one-bedroom and $1,675 for two-bedroom units. The building also includes underground parking and a fitness facility.
The building is located at 10201 82nd Avenue (Whyte Avenue) in Edmonton’s iconic Old Strathcona district and is close to a variety of shopping, dining and entertainment options. Whyte Avenue is also home to some of Edmonton’s most popular events and festivals, including the Fringe, the Strathcona Farmers Market and the Art Walk.
Fuzion on Whyte began life as a condominium building in the fall of 2012. The new owner, secured by GWL Realty Advisors, changed the name to Station on Whyte and converted its use to apartments.
“The building was initially being marketed as an owner-occupied unit and they basically came in and decided to buy the whole thing,” said BCM representative Nick Iozzo.
BCM Developments, a family-run business, began in Edmonton in 1999 and has constructed more than 555 units in Alberta, British Columbia and Saskatchewan over the past 10 years. Its website is marketing five other condominiums at various stages of development in Edmonton: Live Maxx, Station Pointe, The Edmontonian, Corners and Zen.
Limited opportunity for purpose-built apartments
“There are limited opportunities to acquire quality purpose-built apartment buildings in Alberta and even fewer opportunities to acquire new-generation properties,” said GWL Realty Advisors president Paul Finkbeiner. “The addition of multi-family assets to our client’s portfolio is consistent with our strategy of achieving investment diversification through multiple asset classes and regions.”
The Edmonton market had a low vacancy rate of 1.1 per cent, according to the spring edition of the CMHC Housing Market Outlook, which further contributed to the appeal of acquiring the building from BCM.
Property management services will be provided by Vertica Resident Services, a subsidiary of GWL Realty Advisors.
Plenty of retail space
The Station on Whyte also includes close to 25,000 square feet of retail space brokered by Colliers International. The space is suitable for restaurants, service shops and general retailers and has access from both Whyte Avenue and 102nd Street.
A Kingsett Capital sign appears on a fence adjacent to Station on Whyte in a picture on the Colliers International website, suggesting it may be the new ‘undisclosed’ purchaser.
“The main floor retail is for lease in the range of $42 per square foot for the Whyte Avenue exposure and gradually decreases the further away from Whyte, ending in the $25 per square foot range,” said leasing agent Casey McClelland. “We are in negotiations with five tenants for approximately half the building, but there is still a wide variety of sizes available and no deals have been finalized yet.”
The Station on Whyte has received a Silver Designation from Built Green HD Canada, recognizing healthy indoor environments and the use of resource-efficient, environmentally friendly construction practices and products.
GWL Realty Advisors manages a portfolio of more than $16.1 billion of property assets — including office, multi-residential, industrial and retail properties, as well as land — across Canada on behalf of its clients. This acquisition brings the value of multi-family assets under its management to $2.5 billion.