Metro Vancouver Regional District purchases new Metrotown office tower for $205 million

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Image: Ivanhoe Cambridge

Metro Vancouver Regional District has acquired a new 29-storey office building at Metrotown for the organization’s new headquarters.

According to a release, the 29-storey Metrotower III at Metropolis at Metrotown shopping centre has been purchased from commercial developer Ivanhoe Cambridge for $205 million. The 414,000-squarae-foot office building is LEED Platinum certified and built to an AAA Class office space standard.

The public entity, supported by the region’s local municipal governments and the provincial government, says owning the building provides space for the organization’s operations and workforce to expand. The scope of work is expected to grow with increasing demands on services, urban planning, utilities management, and population growth.

As well, ownership of the office tower property provides the regional district with predictable revenues from current and future tenants, lower operating and maintenance costs, and energy and resource savings.

The regional district’s offices will occupy 13 floors while the remaining 12 floors will be leased out to other tenants. The building was completed in 2014 and seven floors are already occupied.

Prior to relocating to the new space, another $28 million will be spent to modify and furnish the space for the needs of regional district employees.

“As part of our long-term strategic planning, we evaluated options to best meet our future needs for necessary office facilities including potential redevelopment scenarios and relocation,” said Greg Moore, Metro Vancouver Board Chair, in a statement.

“Based on thorough due diligence, detailed forecasting and independent third-party validation, the acquisition of Metrotower III was deemed by the Board to be the most economically and environmentally responsible decision in the best interests of our members and ratepayers.”

The regional district’s existing headquarters are located within two office buildings in the Metrotown area, at 4330 Kingsway and 5945 Kathleen Avenue. The existing buildings that house the offices are about three decades old.

To help support the cost of purchasing Metrotower III, Metro Vancouver will sell the current office buildings, both recently valued at approximately $82.5 million.

Ivanhoe Cambridge owns Metrotower I, Metrotower II, and the major shopping centre. TransLink was one of the largest tenants at the Metrotower complex, up until 2013 when its lease expired. Instead of renewing, the transportation agency decided to relocate all of its offices – including Transit Police and Coast Mountain Bus Company – to a new office building at New Westminster’s Brewery District next to SkyTrain’s Sapperton Station.

Lobby animation of Metrotower III

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