A 0.95-acre commercial property with multifamily redevelopment potential and easy public transit access in Toronto’s west-end Weston neighbourhood is for sale.
“The site is, and has been, owned by a private family for many years,” JLL Capital Markets Group executive vice-president Elliot Medoff told RENX in an email interview.
Medoff and sales associate Nick Steele are the leads of the JLL Capital Markets advisory team handling the file.
“In 2013, the Weston GO/UP Express station was opened, bringing new residential demand for residents seeking connectivity to the downtown core in an area with moderate end-unit pricing,” said Medoff. “In turn, land values and the urban planning landscape have evolved favourably, which prompted this sale.”
The corner site at 13-21 John St. and 36-40 South Station St. is occupied by a diverse group of eight tenants — including a pharmacy, a driving school and an Islamic association centre — that can provide significant holding income to offset carrying costs during the entitlements process if redevelopment is sought. Vacant possession can take place in September 2022.
“The site is presently unzoned,” said Medoff. “However, our planning consultants, Urban Strategies, have presented a range of development scenarios that contemplate a 30-storey tower with varied podium heights.”
The anticipated density scenarios play out to a gross floor area of between 281,478 and 330,990 square feet.
The gentrifying neighbourhood surrounding the property is a growing condominium and rental submarket that’s being driven, in part, by immigration. Weston Village had 316,480 residents in 2020 and its population was projected to grow by 27 per cent during the next decade, according to Statistics Canada.
Highway 401 is a three-minute drive from the site and the area also includes national and local retailers, Humber River trails, Weston Golf and Country Club, Weston Farmers’ Market and Artscape Weston Common.
“Institutional and private capital have been priced out of many of the city’s core markets, so transit-connected sites in gentrifying areas like Weston Village are a great strategic fit and offer real upside in end-unit sales pricing,” said Medoff.
“Interest has been very positive to date and we’ve had early conversations with an array of both institutional and private capital developers.
“In all likelihood the site will trade as future purpose-built rental product, but there are also a number of condominium developers looking at this opportunity.”
Other neighbourhood developments
Rockport Group recently completed and stabilized a 30-storey, 369-unit purpose-built rental building at 22 John St. that offers precedent for attainable density and projected rental rates in the node.
Local development applications have also been submitted by: Weston Asset Management Inc. for two 29-storey towers at 1956-1986 Weston Rd.; and BSäR Group of Companies for a 36-storey tower at 1821-1823 Weston Rd.
Medoff said privately held transit-oriented, high-density sites like this one he’s involved with are rapidly diminishing, making it an extremely rare and highly sought-after offering.
The Weston property has no existing financing, providing an opportunity to secure new first mortgage financing at attractive interest rates. The bid date for the site will be after Labour Day, according to Medoff.