Co-working and flexible workspace provider Spaces will add more than a quarter-million square feet to its portfolio in Ontario in 2019, opening four new sites in Toronto and Ottawa.
The 75,000-square-foot Ottawa location, in the heart of the city’s Elgin Street corridor just a few blocks from Parliament Hill, will be the company’s first in the National Capital Region.
“The announcement of these locations in three of Toronto’s diverse neighbourhoods, as well as our first location in Ottawa, shows Spaces’ commitment to opening in the most unique and desirable locations,” said Wayne Berger, the CEO of IWG Canada and Latin America (IWG is the parent company of Spaces), in a release. “The Spaces’ brand of creative co-working isn’t just about the flexibility and collaboration that happens inside the buildings, it’s about finding the most strategic locations, and the best buildings and communities to activate and establish vibrant working ecosystems.”
Spaces Slater Street, to be located at 66 Slater Street, will inhabit the first six storeys of a newly modernized building that used to be home to government employees. The 22-storey, 244,303-square-foot building is at the high-profile corner of Slater and Elgin streets, steps from Confederation Park and Parliament Hill.
Ottawa at “top of our list”
The company is planning a European-designed workspace featuring large collaborative areas, team rooms, dedicated desks, private offices, and fully-equipped meeting rooms. Spaces will also host a full calendar of professional events.
“Ottawa has been on the top of our list for a while now,” said Berger in the release. “As Canada’s political epicentre and emerging technology hub, there’s a deep spirit of innovation and leadership in the city that we are excited to support and help elevate. Successful co-working requires a forward-thinking creative spirit — Ottawa has those attributes.”
The environmentally-sound and technologically-advanced building is owned by KingSett Capital and managed by Colonnade BridgePort. It boasts LEED Gold certification and is working toward achieving the Gold Wired certification.
KingSett has invested more than $13 million in modernizing the building’s interior — from updating the lobbies, common areas and elevators — to attract new tenants migrating downtown to be a part of the city’s re-emerging technology sector.
66 Slater was originally built in 1969.
KingSett bought 66 Slater in 2009
KingSett bought the building in 2009 for its Canadian Real Estate Income Fund for $55.1 million. The previous owner was Pacific International Equities Corp. Inc.
The timing for the renovations couldn’t be better. Ottawa’s office vacancy rate has been steadily dropping for several years, hitting seven per cent in Q2 2019 according to CBRE. In terms of class-A space, the rate is even lower at just 4.6 per cent, and expected to drop further with no appreciable new space coming into the sector.
“The building has been completely repositioned to attract a dynamic tenant like Spaces,” said Hugh Gorman, CEO of Colonnade BridgePort, in the release. “Downtown Ottawa is exploding right now with young companies and diverse talent, and Spaces is the perfect complement.
“Together with our client KingSett Capital, we can’t wait to see what this vibrant new workspace community brings to our city.”
Spaces’ new Toronto locations
In Toronto, the company will open three locations in the east end, west end, and financial core. The buildings are First Gulf’s latest King Street East neighbourhood development The Shift (25 Ontario Street), the Royal Bank Plaza (200 Bay Street) in the heart of the financial district, and a heritage building in The Junction (1655 Dupont Street).
In total, the three Toronto sites will add more than 195,000 square feet of co-working space to the city’s inventory:
Spaces The Shift: Spaces The Shift, at 25 Ontario Street, is a First Gulf development coming to Toronto’s trendy King Street East neighbourhood. It will occupy over 105,000 square feet on six floors of the 24-storey LEED Gold office building. The new location features an exclusive 2,200 square foot terrace for Spaces members, the latest SMART building technology, and a dedicated stairwell for Spaces members from the main lobby. Spaces The Shift is slated to open in 2022.
Spaces Bay Street: This site will occupy 50,000 square feet on three floors at 200 Bay Street, in Royal Bank Plaza. Featuring triple-height ceilings in the financial tower, the new co-working location is in the heart of the financial district. It includes a balcony overlooking the Spaces’ café and collaborative areas designed for networking and casual meetings. Spaces Bay Street is slated to open in Fall 2019.
Spaces The Junction: Spaces The Junction (1655 Dupont Street) will occupy four floors and over 40,000 square feet of a designated heritage building in the The Junction; a building that is also home to the successful Canadian startup Freshbooks. The bright, repurposed brick-and-beam building will be the first Spaces location in what was recently named Toronto’s best neighbourhood to live. Spaces The Junction is slated to open in Fall 2019.
Amsterdam-based Spaces has 185 locations in 54 countries and 205 cities around the world. It plans to open 160 new locations this year. In Canada, it currently has presence in Toronto, Montreal and Vancouver.
About KingSett Capital
Founded in 2002, KingSett has raised $10 billion of equity for its growth, income, urban and mortgage strategies. Currently, KingSett owns interests in a $13.5-billion portfolio of assets.
KingSett continues to seek further opportunities to invest in a wide range of real estate properties, developments, joint ventures and mortgage lending.
About Colonnade BridgePort
Colonnade BridgePort is Ottawa’s largest real estate services and management company focused on leasing, managing and developing high quality, office, industrial, retail, multi-residential and mixed-use properties.
Headquartered in Ottawa, with offices in Mississauga and Toronto, Colonnade BridgePort has approximately nine million square feet under management as well as future development projects.