The GTA commercial market continues to be one of the largest commercial sectors in Canada, growing by more than 198.5 million square feet in the first quarter of this year.
Vacancy rates, meanwhile, decreased to 5.3 per cent.
“Beyond downtown, there was minimal movement throughout Toronto as vacancy rates were virtually unchanged in markets located outside the central core,” the release states. “York, Durham, Peel and Halton Region experienced an increase in overall vacancy rate in Q1, and with approximately one million square feet of office space currently under construction within these markets, it is likely that vacancy rates will continue to increase during 2015.”
Overall, the commercial sector is expected to show positive growth for the rest of the year.
Morguard, a North American real estate and property management company, is forecasting a fourth consecutive year of “positive performance” in the commercial sector.
"Investment returns will be largely income-driven, with some investors looking increasingly to new construction as a core strategy," said Keith Reading, director of research at Morguard. "Boosting income performance will be a focus for existing portfolios. Investors have already shown a willingness to move up the risk ladder in sourcing value-add opportunities to achieve their investment objectives."