Supply constraints on industrial market spark creative development

July 14, 2017 3:37 pm


It should be to no surprise that the Metro Vancouver industrial market is facing critical supply issues. Pressure to increase the supply of residential product, particularly in more urbanized regions, continues to result in rezoning applications or revisions in community plans for high-density, mixed-use developments in existing industrial areas. This trend is evident in Mount Pleasant, False Creek and pockets around Burnaby, like Brentwood. Decades of this activity, supported by rising demand from industrial occupiers (both traditional and non-traditional), has resulted in municipalities and developers alluding to more creative, mixed-use solutions in their developments and masterplanned neighbourhoods.

The Metro Vancouver industrial market consists of just under 199 million square feet of leasable inventory, of which 61% resides in Surrey (34.5 million square feet), Richmond, (34.3 million square feet), Delta (27.1 million square feet) and Burnaby (25.8 million square feet). Over the last 15 years, Metro Vancouver hasn’t had a year of negative absorption (demand) and in 10 of the 15 years, absorption outpaced supply. This has resulted in regional vacancies as low as 1.3% in 2006 and as high as a mere 4.3% in 2010.

Simply speaking, the industrial market in Metro Vancouver continues to be the most versatile and dynamic commercial real estate sector as it evolves to accommodate changing demographics, urbanizations and revisions to community and neighbourhood plans.

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