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Ontario  + Office  | 
Canada's office market faces more distressed asset sales according to CBRE's chairman.

Downtown Toronto Office Vacancy Reaches 12.5%

Greater Toronto office availability remained stable for a rare time, but downtown vacancy reached 12.5% in the third quarter, says a new report from Avison Young.

Downtown vacancy has increased 10.4% from the first quarter of 2020, when it stood at 2.1%.

“Overall demand from traditional office tenants remains below historical norms across the GTA,” said Avison Young.

Overall availability stayed flat, at 18.1%, quarter-over-quarter for only the third time since the first quarter of 2020, said the Toronto-based company in its report. Availability had risen consistently since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Despite remaining flat at 17.5% quarter-over-quarter, downtown availability increased 280 basis points year-over-year. Downtown vacancy rose 50 basis points as negative absorption lowered the amount of occupied office space by 1.1 million square feet.

But educational groups, including public and private colleges and universities, are proving to be a supplemental source of downtown office demand.

Avison Young’s report comes after the City of Toronto moved forward with a potential office-conversion program designed to increase rental housing.

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About Monte Stewart

Monte Stewart serves as Content Director - Canada for Connect Commercial Real Estate. Based in Vancouver, British Columbia, Monte provides daily news coverage of major Canadian commercial real estate markets, including Vancouver, Toronto, Montreal and Calgary. He has written about the real estate sector for various media outlets and Avison Young since the early 2000s. In addition, he has covered sports, general news and business for several leading wire services and publications, including The Canadian Press, The Associated Press, The Calgary Herald, The Globe and Mail, Research Money, The Daily Oil Bulletin, Natural Gas World and The Toronto Star. Monte is active in his community as a youth basketball coach and raises funds for such charitable causes as Movember.

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