Cannabis Stores – Now that we’re about a month into Canada legalizing recreational cannabis use, the City of Vancouver is seeing its first legal pot shops now opening. The delay was initially due to a backlog of processing license applications at the provincial and municipal levels. The first legal cannabis store was City Cannabis Co – located at East 57th and Fraser Street – opened on January 4th. This was swiftly followed by Evergreen Cannabis Store opening its doors on January 5th. Despite the city’s high annual $33,097 business license fee for each store in 2019, more stores are expected to open in the coming months.
BC Retail Predictions – The Retail Council of Canada have recently released a Retail Conditions Report that has shown that British Columbia is now the weakest market for retailers in the country. The weak market can be attributed to several factors: the slow-down in real estate and an absence of staff coupled with a struggle to retain staff due to low wages. The retail environment is softening and as a result, retailers are predicting flat store sales and modest increases in product pricing. More information will become available in the next month or so when Statistics Canada releases more retail figures and we’ll be letting you know all about it!
Lougheed Town Centre – Although pre-construction on the first phase on the City of Lougheed has begun, it has not received the same attention on par with the developments that are occurring in Brentwood and Oakridge. Its scale (a massive $7 billion redevelopment) is heralded as the future of Lougheed Town Centre and with good reason. Upon completion, it will entail over 20 towers with 10,000 housing units and 11 million SF of residential space. Let’s not forget to mention its other major component – the project’s ritual space will double the existing indoor mall to about 1.5 million SF of new retail space. Significant public spaces will also be built, including a 1.6 acre civic park and urban plaza, a linear waterway and green way as well as terraced pocket parks.
Vancouver Centre – Late last year, we reported that GWL Realty officially broke ground at 753 Seymour Street with Vancouver Centre II, a major office tower. We’re pleased to let you know that Vancouver-based mobile game developer and one of the largest video-game developers in the province, Kabam, has secured a lease for 105,000 SF of offce space in Vancouver Centre II. As a major tenant, Kabam will have access to the tower’s Skyline Rooftop Deck on the 29th floor and fitness facility.