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Waterfront Innovation Centre | 53m | 12s | Waterfront Toronto | Sweeny &Co

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Waterfront Toronto have just announced:

"Waterfront Toronto will be issuing a Request for Qualifications (RFQ) in October 2013, for the opportunity to develop a leading-edge innovation centre as part of Toronto’s East Bayfront community. As the submission deadline for this RFQ is scheduled for late November 2013, this notice is being issued to give potential proponents lead time to form their teams. "

The site appears to be the block on Queen's Quay immediately north of the Corus Building and the temporary park area (the grassy knoll) north of Sugar Beach. See: http://www.waterfrontoronto.ca/uploads/documents/2013_09_23_advance_notice_of_rfq___waterfront_toronto_innovation_centre_1_1.pdf
 

innsertnamehere

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Yay! I was worried nothing new would be built for a while down there, Aqualina was looking like it would be the next thing, probably starting around the End of next year. Hopefully this starts sooner. Finally Queens Quay will start having some street frontage as well.
 

RiverCity1

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Excellent news. I'm all for new employment lands, and with Phase 2 of George Brown, this should transform the street well. I will miss the grassy knoll though as it's a nice vista and lookout point...but maybe the new buildings will have public rooftop terraces which will have even better views Thanks for the update!
 

Register123

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Excellent news. I'm all for new employment lands, and with Phase 2 of George Brown, this should transform the street well. I will miss the grassy knoll though as it's a nice vista and lookout point...but maybe the new buildings will have public rooftop terraces which will have even better views Thanks for the update!
I think the grassy knoll will be staying, the development was just the parking area I believe, or at least from looking at all the WT renderings it looked that way.
 

taal

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No its both - you can see from the link above.

One thing I don't quite understand; This seems like a commercial development (300K) - but don't they typically just sell the land, why are they directly requesting for it ? Or is this just to sell the land ?
 

mrxbombastic

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Perhaps WT want to build it and then lease out a portion back to themselves at a cheap rate for their offices. But I can really see any other reason why they would want to own the property. Even if this was the case, why not just sign a lease agreement with the developer.

Should be interesting to see what is proposed here. Hopefully something eye catching and engaging to the street.
 

RiverCity1

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No its both - you can see from the link above.

One thing I don't quite understand; This seems like a commercial development (300K) - but don't they typically just sell the land, why are they directly requesting for it ? Or is this just to sell the land ?
No, they don't just sell the land to anyone. WT has a mandate and has strict controls over everything in their "keeping". But, they also secure all the zoning and planning approvals...so once a developer is qualified to buy the property and move forward with construction, then it's a relatively easy process down the line...they just have to jump through hoops to get qualified.
 

taal

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Ah okay ... I mean for example in East Bayfront there are 2 office buildings being actively marketed, I think hines owns them ?

I don't like coming off too negative but don't have high hopes for this one folks ... I'm not referring to the quality just that it'll probably never happen, or better put, it won't happen for many many years (unless it becomes institutional i.e. not conventional office space .. or goes the route of the Corus building [more on that below])

Why:
- So the 2 200K buildings just to the east of this are getting 0 traction (at least that's what I heard) ... and it shouldn't come as a surprise.
- Recall the Monde development, at first it was to have around 200K of office space in the podium, none of it was leased and they converted it all to residential (btw this is part of the delay at that project).

Maybe 10+ years from now. BTW you cannot use CORUS as an example, this was built too suite (with a huge array of incentives), I mean its possible that'll happen here but very unlikely as that only works if you can attract a large tenant to basically take the entire building which is difficult at best.
 

rdaner

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With George Brown College adjacent as well as Corus Entertainment I could see this working out well. All of the other schools in the province have these public-private buildings, why not GBC? There are probably a lot of firms/organizations that would be a good fit. I imagine that this is far along in the planning stages. For example I can see Corus using this for spin offs. In addition there might be interest in another educational institute having space on the waterfront. Imagine how amazing it would be to have an outpost of a European school on Queens Quay, however small to begin: University of Copenhagen in Toronto.
 

taal

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I'm fairly sure Corus has been cutting jobs as of late so I wouldn't expect anything from them; Educational use sure !

Planning has nothing to do with sales or marketing - so you could be right on that but these projects don't go ahead until they get leased out (or reasonable leased out I should say). For example the other office building in East Bayfront is already approved as well I believe.
 

DSC

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It sounds to me like they're trying to make a mini-MaRS. Maybe the idea is that the waterfront site & broadband, etc. will make up for the transit delays if they kick-start the development themselves.
Possibly the development will kick-start the QQE transit? At the Lower Yonge meeting last week Chris Glaisek from WT sounded surprisingly optimistic that the LRT will be built.
 

44 North

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Possibly the development will kick-start the QQE transit? At the Lower Yonge meeting last week Chris Glaisek from WT sounded surprisingly optimistic that the LRT will be built.
Oh really? I thought it was pretty much accepted that the QQE line was a no-go for the next couple of decades.
 

DSC

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Oh really? I thought it was pretty much accepted that the QQE line was a no-go for the next couple of decades.
I was, pleasantly, surprised by Chris' comment - and the developers along QQE are certainly continuing to press for proper transit on QQE as they were 'promised' it would be in place when they bought their lots. Some of the $$ necessary are there now, the problem is finding the rest and MAYBE this Innovation Centre will provide some?
 
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