Tech start-ups want a different kind of workspace
Commercial realtors who want to attract clients from the fast-growing tech space should keep their eye out for more unusual workspaces. The Financial Post reports that tech start-ups are looking for something out of the ordinary, in fact as far as possible from the kind of corporate property that many traditional businesses want. Marc Shewchun is head of operations at a story-sharing website run by Wattpad Technology in Toronto. It’s based not in a modern hi-tech tower but in a red-brick former cigar and whiskey shop. Shewchun says: “The space encourages openness and a lack of hierarchy. You can make it into whatever you want. It’s much more important than properly working plumbing and even floors.” The space being sought by companies in the tech sector are likened to college dorms; perfect for the typical millennial who is running the firm. Where there’s demand there is value and CBRE data shows that since 2007 there has been a 26 per cent increase in rents for brick-and-beam property in Toronto’s east end and 49 per cent in the west end; compared to a rise in towers in the financial district of just 6.4 per cent over the same period.