Thursday, August 1, 2013

Toronto Condo

Photo Credit Toronto Star

According to Urbanation, a firm that studies Toronto’s condo market, there were 58,659 condo apartment units under construction at the end of last year in the Toronto region, but it expects about 19,000 will be completed this year due to resource constraints, weather and other delays. A lower number would lessen concerns about overbuilding, that would drive prices lower.
“We recognize that it creates certain vulnerabilities for the market should demand unexpectedly fall,” Urbanation said in a recent report on its website. “However we also don’t believe it should be used as the main basis for projecting a decline in condo prices.”
TD Bank warned recently that Toronto’s condo market will see prices drop by an average of 4 per centthis year and next, blaming a drop in demand amid a continued building boom.
“The number of new units scheduled to be completed in the GTA over the next two years is striking at a time when new condo sales are dwindling,” TD says, noting that high-rise condo buildings have accounted for 60 per cent of supply of overall new homes in the GTA since 2011. That compares to 28 per cent in 2000.   -- 2014 April 2   Yahoo!

Mid-rise Buildings Challenge Developers & City

“We call it the Oreo cookie problem,” Mr. Mallins added. “The problem is that there are so many fixed costs in any given building, from the mechanical systems on the roof and all the design and infrastructure costs at the bottom. But we have to make our money from the residential floors in the middle, whether you have 10 floors or 50.”

Despite those economic challenges, Ms. Keesmaat is promoting mid-rise development as a people-friendly solution that the city believes can house about half of the 500,000 new inhabitants the city is expecting by 2031.

“It is an important part of building sustainable neighbourhoods along streets that in many cases are underutilized,” she said. “It gently inserts more density and allows retail to flourish which benefits all residents in the neighbourhood.”

If the strategy continues to be embraced by buyers and developers, it also means that a considerable amount of new retail and commercial space is going to be available in mid-rises.

Cities such as Paris and Barcelona have high population densities comparable to that of Toronto’s downtown high-rise district even though they rely on mid-rises rather than towers, Ms. Keesmaat said.

Mid-rise complements public transit and makes more efficient use of the city’s existing sewer and water infrastructure. City guidelines encourage the use of stepped setbacks on higher floors to open up streets to sunlight and create more people-friendly neighbourhoods than the concrete-and-glass canyons that cast shadows across downtown.

Toronto approved the avenues and mid-rise study in 2010, which contains policies that are now guiding mid-rise development.
Date: Tuesday, January 21, 2014

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