Oxford Properties Announces Plans to Develop a World-Scale Project in Downtown Toronto
Project to Include Casino, Convention Centre, Office, Retail, Hotel and Residential
TORONTO, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - Oct. 12, 2012) -
Editors Note: There are three photos associated with this press release.
Oxford Properties Group today announced plans for Oxford Place, a proposed $3 billion plus world-scale development project in downtown Toronto. The site is on the south side of Front Street, bounded by Simcoe Street and Blue Jays Way.
Fully funded by the private sector, Oxford Place would be one of the largest urban redevelopment projects in North America. The plan includes: a revitalized and expanded convention centre; significant new retail, office and residential space; 4,000 new sub grade parking stalls; and an integrated casino and hotel complex. The casino itself would comprise less than 10% of the project and would be funded, built and operated by the casino operator selected by the Province. A new 5.5 acre urban park connecting the core to the waterfront is contemplated over the existing rail corridor.
Blake Hutcheson, President and CEO, Oxford Properties, said, "If the decision is made to have a casino in the City of Toronto, Oxford believes it can provide the best location and the ideal solution for all stakeholders. Oxford Place is a well-conceived private sector solution that requires no public infrastructure or other funding and drives significant community benefits for area residents, visitors, corporate tenants, taxpayers and the broader Toronto community. Every aspect of this project draws on Oxford's world class development expertise which is demonstrated by our large scale mixed-use projects in New York and London."
Michael Kitt, Executive Vice President, Canada, Oxford, said, "Although the casino itself represents less than 10% of the project's area, it is a necessary and essential catalyst for the entire development and is a use that will be complementary to Toronto's core in the way that we have designed and conceived it."
The Metro Toronto Convention Centre is currently an extremely successful convention centre operation and Oxford looks forward to working with MTCC to create a revitalized, state-of-the-art, convention facility. An expanded and modernized facility as part of Oxford Place will broaden the appeal of the MTCC and attract significant new convention business to the City of Toronto.
The proposed location of the casino and hotel, at the western edge of the project, allows for phased construction to create new convention centre space. The phasing would allow for the construction of new convention space prior to the demolition of the existing area to ensure that current and evolving MTCC client needs are accommodated. The expanded convention centre would result in over 22 acres of contiguous exhibit space.
Kitt said, "Oxford Place will be directly connected to the city's existing transportation infrastructure, will create thousands of full time jobs and will deliver other economic benefits including significantly increased property tax revenue for the City of Toronto. Additionally, the nature of the development means that an improved and expanded convention centre would be privately funded, rather than the typical model that relies on public funding."
Oxford Place has been master-planned by world renowned architects Foster + Partners, whose previous projects include: Abu Dhabi's Masdar City Development; Washington's Smithsonian Institute; Hong Kong's Chek Lap Kok airport; the Beijing Airport; and London's Canary Wharf Underground Station.
The Oxford Place site is well located within a vibrant local residential neighbourhood in the centre of Toronto's theatre and entertainment districts. The development complements the City's existing infrastructure with over 15,000 hotel rooms and 10,000 parking stalls located within a 15 minute walk, Union Station one block to the east, as well as a large number of adjacent public structures such as: the Rogers Centre; CN Tower; and the new Ripley's Aquarium. The development includes an innovative plan to ease traffic flow and congestion along with 4,000 new sub grade parking stalls which, with its central location allows for seamless integration of the project with the existing GTA public transit and road systems, all without the need for new government spending.
Hutcheson said, "Oxford has a considerable vested interest both in this project and in the downtown core of the City of Toronto. We have engaged an extraordinary team to develop the very best plan for this site and to transform this entertainment and commercial hub into a world class destination. Every detail is being planned in a professional and tasteful way to ensure success for all stakeholders. We would not take this on if we did not think we could deliver a bull's eye solution to this complex issue, and we will work with all stakeholders to deliver an extremely positive result for the City of Toronto."
The City of Toronto is engaged in a formal process with respect to supporting gaming in the city. Oxford is committed to working with the City and other stakeholders as they move forward with their process.
Oxford Place Facts
Developer and owner: Oxford Properties Group
Architect and Planner: Foster + Partners
Location: Front Street, bounded by Simcoe Street and Blue Jays Way
Total area: 11 acres with 7.35 million SF of master planned mixed-use development
Elements: * 1.1 million SF of Convention Centre
* 2.5 million SF of Office
* 1 million SF of Retail
* 600,000 SF of Residential
* 450,000 SF of Casino and Amenity Space
* 1.7 million SF of Hotel and Amenity Space
* 4,000 Parking Stalls On-Site
* 5.5 acres of public parkland, cooperating with neighboring stakeholders
Timeline: Contingent on City of Toronto support and Ontario Lottery and Gaming Corporation operator selection process. Oxford will be in a position to submit a rezoning application shortly after the necessary decisions are made.
Oxford Properties Group is a global platform for real estate investment, development and management, with over 1,400 employees and over $20 billion of real assets that it manages for itself and on behalf of its co-owners and investment partners. Established in 1960, Oxford has regional offices in Toronto, London and New York, and the company's portfolio includes approximately 50 million square feet of office, retail, industrial, multi-family and hotel properties. The City of Toronto is Oxford's largest investment market with approximately $9 billion in assets under management. Oxford's portfolio includes such world class assets as TD Canada Trust Tower, Royal Bank Plaza, Citibank Place, Richmond-Adelaide Centre, MetroCentre, Yorkdale Shopping Centre and Scarborough Town Centre. Oxford has several significant commercial developments currently underway in the City, including the 930,000 square foot Class AAA RBC Waterpark Place (Toronto's first LEED platinum development), the revitalized 111 Richmond Street West for Google Canada and the $220 million expansion at Yorkdale Shopping Centre, all of which are directly connected to public transit. Oxford is the real estate arm of the OMERS Worldwide Group of Companies. For more information about Oxford visit: www.oxfordproperties.com.
OMERS is one of Canada's largest pension funds with over $55 billion in net assets. It provides first-class pension administration and innovative products and services to over 420,000 members. Approximately one in every 20 employees working in the province of Ontario is an OMERS member. Through the OMERS Worldwide brand, our team of investment professionals uses a direct drive, active management investment strategy to invest in public and private market assets, including publicly-traded equities, fixed-income, infrastructure, private equity and real estate. For more information, please visit www.omers.com, or www.omersworldwide.com.