Calgary commercial real estate


Whether it is a new business making the move to Calgary or a local business expanding, the Calgary region has seen a large amount of development in the commercial real estate sector.



Calgary boasts a strong office, industrial and retail market. In fact, according to the Investment Property Databank, in 2011 Calgary produced the highest returns for commercial real estate out of 60 international cities.

Office real estate market
Calgary's strong economy has fueled real estate growth for the region. Calgary has 39.6 million square feet (sq ft.) of downtown office space and 24.4 million sq ft. of beltline and suburban office space across all classes.

The average age of Calgary's office buildings is the youngest of any major Canadian city, which offers benefits such as efficient building systems, high environmental standards and state of the art design with high efficiency leasing.

We're connected
For downtown office space, an additional advantage lies with the Plus 15 skywalk system. The largest of its kind in the world, Calgary’s Plus 15 system has over 16 kilometres of passageways and over 57 bridges connecting office towers across the downtown core. The system offers efficient year-round indoor access to many of downtown’s major office towers and buildings. This can increase the number of meetings that can be done in a day while removing the potential barriers of additional travel time, traffic and parking. In addition, Calgary’s above-grade retail infrastructure creates a vibrant retail experience in the downtown core.

Calgary Office Real Estate Market - Q4 2012

Total Inventory (SF)New Supply for Quarter (SF)YTD New Supply (SF)Absorption for Quarter (SF)YTD Absorption (SF)Vacancy Rate (%)Under Construction (SF)
Downtown Office Class AA13,434,0611,940,000-3,4912,005,7960.47%1,661,000
Downtown Office Class A13,293,32800-99,265-174,7673.23%0
Downtown Office Class B8,723,65700475,989238,4734.96%0
Downtown Office Class C4,116,94800-27,265-69,99912.91%0
Total Downtown Office39,567,99401,940,000330,0121,999,5033.68%1,661,000
Beltline Office6,118,257044,840-122,65447,7149.12%679,000
Suburban Office18,326,348256,658518,777162,917517,8099.40%1,748,445
Total Beltline and Suburban24,444,605256,658563,61740,263565,5239.33%2,427,445
Total Office Market64,012,599256,6582,503,6174,088,445
*Previously closed property Source: CMN Colliers Calgary

Industrial real estate market
Calgary offers 125.1 million square feet of industrial space, generally located in the South East and North East quadrants of the city. This inventory is composed mainly of transportation, logistics and manufacturing facilities. Approximately 35 per cent of our inventory has been built in the past 10 years, therefore there are significant energy efficiencies and building design and site amenities to accommodate current warehousing standards and transportation equipment needs.

Calgary industrial real estate market - Q4 2012

Total inventory (SF)New Supply for Quarter (SF)YTD New Supply (SF)Absorption for Quarter (SF)YTD Absorption (SF)Vacancy Rate (SF)Under Construction (SF)
125,068,494304,8911,990,778-106,6943,718,8005.05%2,498,968
Source: Colliers International


Retail real estate market
Calgary offers a wide variety of retail space options; comprised primarily of enclosed shopping centres, power centres, strip malls and podium retail. The Calgary Region is also the home of one of the only two new enclosed shopping centres to have been built in Canada in over 20 years.

U.S. average retail inventory per person is 45 square feet whereas Calgary has approximately 25 square feet per person ( BLJC Orange Retail Real Estate Solutions). This contributes to low vacancy rates - which are amongst the lowest in North America and very high competition for quality retail space in all product classes. The effective vacancy rates are closer to 0 per cent, largely due to chronic or obsolete inventory.

Most major national and international retailers are located in Calgary and boast some of the highest productivity levels in the nation for a variety of reasons - including highest personal income per capita in 2011 at $55,227 (Conference Board of Canada) and highest number of millionaires in Canada on a per capita basis in 2009 (140.5 per 100,000) (Statistics Canada) - which contribute to high sales volumes. Alberta also had the highest commercial food service sales per capita in 2011 at $1,897.93 (GE Capital, Franchise Finance).

There is significant new inventory in the planning or early development stages for Calgary. These projects range from stand-alone developments to mixed-use and street front projects.  The map below outlines locations and details of a number of these projects.

Calgary retail real estate market - Q3 2012

Total inventory (SF)New Supply for Quarter (SF)YTD New Supply (SF)Absorption for Quarter (SF)YTD Absorption (SF)Vacancy Rate (%)Under Construction (SF)
Northwest5,500,00000-120,565-82,5513.2%333,485
Centre North1,200,00000-8,0683,7172.6%208,384
Northeast7,600,00000-45,8725411.8%0
Southeast2,000,0000194,000-32,743179,4277.4%0
South10,700,00034,00034,00041,94738,1471.3%138,533
Southwest4,500,000050,000-28,58932,9741.6%45,713
Central Business District6,500,00020,00060,00013,55741,3393.7%103,645
Total Retail Market38,000,00054,000338,000-180,333213,5942.4%829,760
Source: Barclay Street Real Estate


Brokers
Calgary has a major brokerage presence that can provide much needed services to individuals and organizations looking to purchase land and infrastructure. There are many benefits to using a broker: they are aware of current market conditions; they know and have established relationships with the key industry players; and finally, brokers are well-versed in the process of purchasing land and infrastructure, including legal requirements, making offers and writing/reviewing documents related to purchase. Representation from a broker is critical to ensuring a successful purchase and avoiding legal difficulties by choosing to purchase without the assistance of a broker.

Calgary Economic Development’s Business Development Managers have strong relationships with brokers in the city, and can assist organizations and individuals in matching them with the appropriate broker. For more information, contact the Sector Specialists.

Making business easy
The City of Calgary and Calgary Economic Development understand the importance of a streamlined and efficient permit approval process, and have established cutting edge tools to facilitate projects and their approvals through The City of Calgary – Development and Building Approvals Business Unit. Unlike most jurisdictions with competing regions and towns in the metropolitan area, the city of Calgary (covering an area of approximately 14 miles by 20 miles) is under a single governing authority with common land use and building permitting regulations and procedures. This is a major advantage as businesses can easily compare location options throughout the city.

Looking for available space
Calgary Economic Development partnered with Altus InSite, the primary provider of national office market data and perspective for Canada’s commercial real estate industry. Altus InSite is a division of Altus Group, Canada’s largest independent real estate consulting firm.

Altus InSite is an online tool that companies can use to search for available industrial, office and retail space in the Calgary Region based on the square foot size required. Companies can compare available space by office class, total space and leasing district. The tool also provides information for the leasing contact so companies can inquire further about space they are interested in.

Use the Altus InSite tool to search for available industrial, office and retail space.

The City of Calgary also provides information on available land for sale as well as future land available, and provides information and resource links for industrial land sales, commercial land sales and residential land sales.

Visit The City of Calgary for more information and to use their interactive map.

The BOMA Building Inventory also provides users with a comprehensive and searchable database of all industrial, retail and office towers. The list can be narrowed based on geographical location, and the individual building listings identify everything from square footage to parking, building owners and lease agents.

Search the BOMA Building Inventory (hosted by the Calgary Herald)

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Fonte: Calgary Economic Development

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