Inside Amazon's offices in the heart of downtown Toronto (PHOTOS)

Jul 8 2022, 9:23 pm

Amazon has established a strong presence in the very core of downtown Toronto, and it has plans to keep growing.

Three office locations that form the Amazon Toronto Tech Hub are just footsteps away from Union Station, serving as the home base for a total of about 2,000 office staff across a combined floor area of approximately 350,000 sq ft.

This includes the company’s first Toronto office at Southcore Financial Centre (SFC) at 120 Bremner Boulevard, called YYZ14, where it occupies five floors, with two more floors to be added later in 2022. It first opened in 2015.

A new space opened earlier this spring at 18 York Street, also at SFC, spanning 130,000 sq ft across eight floors. YYZ18 at 18 York Street will further expand with three additional floors later in the year.

YYZ16 at Scotia Plaza, located at 40 King Street West, opened with five floors in 2018.

SFC is owned by Vancouver-based investment and development firm Quadreal Property Group, while Scotia Plaza is owned by BentallGreenOak.

These offices are dedicated to various teams, including Amazon Web Services, Alexa, Amazon Advertising, Prime Video, Amazon Music, and Retail and Operations Technology.

amazon toronto office

Amazon Toronto Tech Hub (Kenneth Chan/Daily Hive)

amazon toronto office

Amazon Toronto Tech Hub (Kenneth Chan/Daily Hive)

amazon toronto office

Amazon Toronto Tech Hub (Kenneth Chan/Daily Hive)

amazon toronto office

Amazon Toronto Tech Hub (Kenneth Chan/Daily Hive)

As is the case with many other office-based employers, Amazon staff are currently working under a hybrid model of work. But with the pandemic turning a real corner in recent months, a growing number of staff have begun to return to the workplace.

For those returning to the workplace, purpose-built amenities and spaces for a comfortable work environment await them, especially at the new YYZ18.

Amazon provided Daily Hive Urbanized with a tour of its offices this week, including the complete suite of offerings at YYZ18.

Staff have varying seating arrangements to choose from, ranging from semi-traditional cubicles to nooks for individual work or small group work.

The overall interior design concept is simple and understated and builds on the same motifs and layouts found at the first Toronto office and other locations worldwide while providing a design nod and flair to its local host community through art.

amazon toronto office

Amazon Toronto Tech Hub (Kenneth Chan/Daily Hive)

amazon toronto office

Amazon Toronto Tech Hub (Kenneth Chan/Daily Hive)

amazon toronto office

Amazon Toronto Tech Hub (Kenneth Chan/Daily Hive)

amazon toronto office

Amazon Toronto Tech Hub (Kenneth Chan/Daily Hive)

amazon toronto office

Amazon Toronto Tech Hub (Kenneth Chan/Daily Hive)

All three office locations also provide workers with some of the best city views, whether it be a completely unobstructed view of the CN Tower and Rogers Centre, “Jurassic Park” next to Scotiabank Arena, or the urban canyon created by Union Station.

SFC, the location of Amazon’s growing presence, also features extensive green building designs.

“Urban forests” and an “urban park” can also be found on the lower roofs of the SFC buildings, and five bee hives are strategically situated on the third-floor landscaped terrace of YYZ14’s tower.

The buildings use 40% less water than traditional office buildings, with underground cisterns in each tower capable of collecting tens of thousands of gallons of rainwater for use in toilet flushing in the lower floors of the building and landscape irrigation.

An automatic shade system, controlled by a roof-mounted sensor, recalculates and automatically raises or lowers blinds every 15 minutes, based on external sunlight levels, cloud cover, reflections from surrounding structures, date and time, and group or floor conditions. This smart building feature maximizes natural daylight, and reduces the need to use building heating and cooling systems.

As well, SFC has superior waste management operational strategies.

amazon toronto office

Amazon Toronto Tech Hub (Kenneth Chan/Daily Hive)

amazon toronto office

Amazon Toronto Tech Hub (Kenneth Chan/Daily Hive)

amazon toronto office

Amazon Toronto Tech Hub (Kenneth Chan/Daily Hive)

amazon toronto beehives 2

Bee hives at the Southcore Financial Centre, home of Amazon Toronto Tech Hub. (Kenneth Chan/Daily Hive)

amazon toronto beehives 2

Bee hives at the Southcore Financial Centre, home of Amazon Toronto Tech Hub. (Kenneth Chan/Daily Hive)

It is also no coincidence that Quadreal Property Group is also Amazon’s landlord for its upcoming massive office expansion in Vancouver.

Quadreal’s The Post, the redevelopment of downtown Vancouver’s former Canada Post complex, will see the completion of its first phase in Fall 2022. When the entire mixed-use commercial development reaches full completion in Fall 2023, The Post will have over one million sq ft of office space and nearly 200,000 sq ft of retail, restaurant, and service spaces. The office component is completely leased to Amazon, where it will serve as the company’s expansion hub, accommodating up to 6,000 office employees. Currently, there are about 3,500 office staff in Vancouver.

amazon toronto office

Amazon Toronto Tech Hub (Kenneth Chan/Daily Hive)

amazon toronto office

Amazon Toronto Tech Hub (Kenneth Chan/Daily Hive)

amazon toronto office

Amazon Toronto Tech Hub (Kenneth Chan/Daily Hive)

amazon toronto office

Amazon Toronto Tech Hub (Kenneth Chan/Daily Hive)

amazon toronto office

Amazon Toronto Tech Hub (Kenneth Chan/Daily Hive)

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