In many respects, 2020 was a year to forget. But when it comes to commercial real estate, there were some booming sales recorded in Greater Victoria, and the West Shore saw fully half of those transactions; a sign that real estate values are climbing quickly in the area.
Figures provided by Dustin Miller with victoriamarket.ca show the number one sale, with a price tag of $60 million, was a prominent Langford property at 945 Reunion Ave., –the Crossing at Belmont rental component of the Belmont Market development on the former high school site.
Vendor Ledcor Property Investments sold the 156-unit residential component only to Killam Apartment REIT (real estate investment trust), retaining the ground-floor commercial spaces.
Not far behind at No. 2 ($54 million) was Realstar Group’s sale of the Christie Point Apartments peninsula in Portage Inlet, at the end of Craigowan Road in View Royal, also to Killam. Realstar obtained the necessary rezoning approval in 2017 to undertake a major redevelopment of the property, but to date that has not materialized.
No. 3 on the list ($52.05 million) was 1085 Goldstream Ave. at Leigh Road in Langford, a five-storey, 166-unit, high-end rental building known as The Star on Goldstream. Miller notes that the $313,554 price per door shows a narrowing of the value gap between Langford and Victoria.
Coming in at No. 4 was the Capital Iron lands on Store Street in Victoria ($46.25 million), a 6.7-acre, six-parcel package that includes the waterfront area around the store itself and adjacent retail buildings, plus the parking lot/retail block across the street running from Government Street to Store between Discovery and Chatham streets. Capital Iron founders the Greene family sold to Reliance Properties.
At No. 5 was the sale of the Thetis Lake Apartments complex by Limona Properties to the Capital Regional Housing Corporation for $39.64 million, as part of the CRD’s Regional Housing First affordable rentals program.
No. 6 was the former Oak Bay Lodge site, sold for $30.74 million by Island Health to the Capital Regional Hospital District Corporation. The buildings are slated for demolition early in 2021, with public consultation on a new development proposal following.
At No. 7 on the list ($30.525 million) was The Arc rental building at 2850 Bryn Maur Rd. in Langford. DB Building Services constructed this six-storey timber building, and Bill Beadle sold it to Centurion Apartments REIT.
No. 8 was the Comfort Inn and Suites at 3020 Blanshard St., sold for $18.5 million to BC Housing by Cornell Developments Ltd. for use as shelter for the city’s homeless community mid-pandemic.
Coming in at No. 9 was The Loreen, a 52-unit affordable rental building at 21 Gorge Rd. E. that sold for $15.77 million to Real Homes Management Corporation, by the non-profit Greater Victoria Rental Development Society.
Winding up the top 10 was Paul’s Motor Inn at 1900 Douglas St., which Paul’s Restaurants Ltd. sold for $14 million to BC Housing, also to help house those people previously living in Topaz Park.