The underrated real estate crisis in Metro Vancouver relates to job-supporting industrial properties, and one new project in Burnaby’s Brentwood area hopes to make a small dent in the region’s severe industrial supply shortage.
PC Urban Properties announced this week it is launching its fourth industrial strata development in the region by renovating and expanding an existing 50,000-sq-ft industrial and business park at 5495 Regent Street – located near Still Creek and the Trans-Canada Highway and just east of Willingdon Avenue.
When complete, the revitalized complex – called IntraUrban Brentwood – will have over 100,000 sq. ft. of light industrial space, making it the first new, small bay industrial strata property in the Brentwood area in over two decades.
The complex will have three buildings, with a design and finishing higher than traditional industrial standards. All units have 24-ft ceiling heights and built-in, upper floor flex space suitable for office and management space.
“We feel it’s an ingenious solution to an obsolete old property,” says Brent Sawchyn, the Principal for PC Urban, in a statement.
“This is the first industrial strata in the area in many years. And this Brentwood area of Burnaby is experiencing an exploding population in the next few years with the coming multi-family, mixed-use developments. Brentwood will soon be a huge residential community, much like Metrotown. And the amenities and vibrancy will be a huge benefit to the businesses that buy into the strata development.”
These units, starting at $425 per sq. ft., are billed as an ideal space for small and medium-sized businesses.
Average prices for industrial strata within the municipality have gone up by 88% over the past 10 years, and there is every indication it will continue to soar due to high demand and limited new supply.
According to CBRE, the region’s industrial availability dropped from 3.9% in 2016 to 2.3% by the end of 2017, which is the lowest on record in Metro Vancouver and the second lowest in North America.
Last year, Metro Vancouver experienced 4.7 million sq. ft. of positive absorption, but this was achieved with only 3.1 million sq. ft. of new industrial space being completed.
Without zoning changes that create more industrial supply, the region could run out of industrial lands in a few short years, forcing industry to areas outside of the Lower Mainland – potentially even other provinces.
Industrial spaces are needed to support the supply chain logistics of retail businesses and the film and television production industry and provide storage space for businesses that rely on such spaces.