swansongtoo

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swansongtoo last won the day on January 25

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About swansongtoo

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  1. J'ai vu cette annonce a l'instant pour un nouveau projet au 1200 Drummond. Je sais qu'il y a un fil pour un immeuble proposer d'environ 16 ou 17 étages ce site. https://gatsbycondos.com/?utm_source=fidelitix&utm_medium=display
  2. Taken this morning an hour ago looks like construction has started.
  3. If this picture doesn't sum up summer on Montreal streets I don't know what does.
  4. Exactly ... I've said it before ... go to Costco in Point St. Charles and tell me what you see of the mountain.
  5. This picture would make a superb "carte postale". Also can't help thinking how spectacular a 200m + tower on top of CN would be for our skyline.
  6. And you heard this where ?
  7. Developers vow to keep building skyscrapers, even as tech firms ditch their offices ALEX BOZIKOVICARCHITECTURE CRITIC RACHELLE YOUNGLAI Canada’s biggest office tower developers are pressing ahead with their multibillion-dollar skyscrapers even as a growing number of tech companies are pulling back and putting their office space on the market. Before the pandemic slammed the economy in March, insatiable demand from tech companies helped drive down office vacancy rates to record lows in the major cities while driving up rents. But now, for the first time in years, the sector’s appetite for downtown real estate is diminishing. Developers and institutional investors say they are confident that demand for space will return. But nobody is certain what, exactly, offices will look like and which changes forced by the pandemic are short-term trends and which are fundamental shifts. Over the past few months, Shopify Inc. has called the era of “office centricity over” and smaller tech companies have started to put their space up for sublet, creating turmoil in Canadian commercial real estate. In downtown Toronto, companies such as Ritual Technologies, CrowdRiff, Tulip and Rangle.io are all trying to get rid of some of their space, according to the companies and brokers. That has increased the space available for sublease on the market to 862,470 square feet from 687,917 square feet at the end of March, according to data from commercial realtor Cresa. After years of heady growth, food delivery app Ritual has lost significant business and slashed staff. It no longer needs as much space as it once had, in part because of structural changes taking place in its work force. “It’s not that half the people will work from home forever, I just think that everyone is going to work from home more, ongoing,” said its chief executive Ray Reddy. ”My sense is we’re likely not going back to a time where 100 per cent of people are going to be at offices, for maybe not ever.” Meanwhile, Mobify, Wishpond, Vision Critical, Stemcell Technologies in downtown Vancouver have put some or all of their space on the market, according to listings and brokers. That has contributed to the available sublet space more than doubling to 280,000 square feet, according to Cresa. “I have never seen the sublease space go up as fast. Never. Ever,” said Ross Moore, a senior adviser with Cresa, who has worked on leases in Vancouver for nearly three decades. Although these tech firms represent a tiny fraction of the total office space in Vancouver and Toronto, the two cities had the lowest office vacancy rates in Canada and the U.S. before the pandemic, with a good chunk of the market driven by tech companies. “It is absolutely a shift,” said Allison Marsales, who heads office leasing in the Toronto region for Cushman & Wakefield. However, she added, “It is not a significant amount of space and there is no indication that there will be downward pressure on [rental] rates.” A drop in demand from the tech sector would certainly affect the office market, but it would not necessarily kill new development projects. Further, real estate developers and office landlords suggest that employers will reduce the density of their office space, bringing in fewer staff at one time and allowing more space for each person. This trend could counterbalance some of the moves to jettison space. Westbank, Oxford Properties and other major real estate developers told The Globe they were pushing forward with buildings under construction, while planning major office projects – with delivery dates five years in the future or more. “People think 80 days of a virus is going to change the way humans have evolved for 100,000 years. It’s a ridiculous construct,” said Ian Gillespie, CEO of Westbank. "Humans need each other to build together, to be creative together.” Mr. Gillespie said the company is continuing work on proposed office towers in Vancouver and Toronto, and Westbank plans to announce five-million square feet worth of new projects in Vancouver and in San Jose, Calif., in the coming months. STORY CONTINUES BELOW ADVERTISEMENT Oxford Properties also has a series of developments under way in Toronto and Vancouver and said it has no plans to change course despite Shopify – along with Facebook and other tech companies – announcing their work forces could work remotely permanently. What got lost in the high-profile pronouncements was that none of these firms are actually reducing their space, according to Eric Plesman, Oxford’s executive vice-president for North America. “A lot of people are determining what that impact may or may not be. Facebook said the opposite and said there would be an increased need for space.” Twenty office towers are under construction in downtown Toronto, including four skyscrapers with more than a million square feet of space. In Vancouver, 13 office properties are under construction, according to data from commercial realtor CBRE. Their developers, which include Allied REIT, Ivanhoé Cambridge, Brookfield, Oxford Properties, Cadillac Fairview and Westbank, are also pushing forward. All these buildings were conceived when office vacancy rates were falling, immigration was increasing and companies were desperate to be in the major cities to attract workers. These buildings are due to be completed over the next few years, which would add millions of square feet of new office supply at a time when no one is sure how long it will take for the economy to recover. Among the projects still under way is the massive office and residential complex called The Well, a project by Allied and RioCan REIT. Shopify has not asked to get out of its lease, RioCan chief executive Ed Sonshine said. Even if the e-commerce company wanted to reduce its footprint, it would have to pay considerable penalties to do so. “Shopify can’t break its leases with Allied or the Allied-RioCan joint venture,” Allied chief executive Michael Emory said. He said Shopify’s announcement that people could work from home permanently did not mean much for the future of office space. “The recent working from home announcements, whatever they prove to mean in actual fact, will have little to no impact on the developments under way or on the office markets in Toronto and Vancouver generally,” he said. He noted that vacancy rates in the two cities remain low, with little likelihood of increasing in the next 24 to 36 months. There are signs the market is currently healthy. Unlike malls where rent collection has been dismal, office building landlords say they have received more than 90 per cent of their rent for April and May. Slate Asset Management, which owns 84 office buildings in Canada, said it has brokered 30 new leases with investment firms, health care and other businesses over the course of the pandemic. Dream Office REIT, which owns 32 office properties, mostly in Toronto, said it has also brokered new leases at the same rates it was offering in February. On the flip side, lawyers and leasing brokers for tenants have been renegotiating spaces and lower rates for their clients. “We are working with our clients to right size their office premises and sublet their excess space,” said Stan Krawitz, vice-chairman with Savills Canada, who has been working on deals under which the tenant pays less rent or reduces the size of their premises in exchange for a longer-term lease. When the next wave of projects breaks ground, the configuration of individual offices and communal spaces is likely to be different, according to an architect who has designed spaces for Shopify and other tech companies. “I think it’s right that [Shopify] put things on pause,” says Andrew Reeves of Ottawa-based Linebox Studio. “Right now, people are running around trying to figure out an Office 2.0 solution … but there’s not enough data yet to make good decisions.” Mr. Reeves predicts that lower floors of towers will become more valuable, since many users can walk upstairs and avoid elevators – and the danger of COVID-19 transmission. “The idea is, let’s reinvent the first four floors and make that primo space. We have these big marble lobbies; maybe this can be leasable space.” Anne Martel, co-founder and senior-vice president of operations for Montreal’s Element AI, says the company has no plans to sublease its space. “Going to a completely remote arrangement is not something we’re considering; we have a collaborative culture,” she said. “For us it will be a slow return to a new normal.” But the company’s office space “was designed for people to bump into each other, the opposite of what you will want in the coming months,” she said. Element is planning to stagger work hours in order to maintain distancing and to rethink its layout, but not to give up any space in the short term. In the longer term, “I certainly think that people will give up office space,” she said. “At the renewal stage, we’ll be asking the same questions as everyone else.” With a file from Sean Silcoff
  8. This is the interesting comment and may be related to the other post on here about possible mixed use on The Bay site "...Hudson’s Bay is planning to “right-size and rethink” some of its real estate, including flagship stores in Montreal and Vancouver, “to create value beyond the store itself,” Mr. Baker said". **** As pandemic hobbles retailers, HBC fights department store headwinds SUSAN KRASHINSKY ROBERTSONRETAILING REPORTER PUBLISHED 59 MINUTES AGOUPDATED MAY 29, 2020 FOR SUBSCRIBERS The Hudson's Bay Company, which was taken private earlier this year, is photographed in Calgary, March 18, 2020, amid the COVID-19 pandemic. JEFF MCINTOSH/THE CANADIAN PRESS Venerable retailers are falling victim to the industry shock from the COVID-19 pandemic. But Hudson’s Bay Co. vows it will be a survivor. In the United States, several department store chains that were on shaky ground even before the pandemic, including Neiman Marcus and JCPenney, have filed for bankruptcy protection. In Canada, footwear retailer Aldo Group Inc. and struggling clothing chain Reitmans Canada Ltd. have filed for creditor protection. Industry leaders have cautioned that more bankruptcies could be coming in retail. But HBC LP governor, chairman and chief executive Richard Baker, who took the company private earlier this year, insists his department store chains will not be among them. "How stupid would we be to go private and run out of money three months later?” Mr. Baker said in his first interview since the privatization was completed on March 4. Even so, North America’s oldest company is not immune to the challenges facing the industry. Before going private, HBC had reported three consecutive years of net losses. Like other retailers, it’s suffering from the effects of weeks of store shutdowns amid the pandemic. The company has delayed rent payments, triggering default notices from some landlords. HBC has also postponed its payments to suppliers to conserve cash. HBC is hoping shoppers will feel safe enough to return to its Hudson’s Bay, Saks Fifth Avenue and Saks Off Fifth stores as they reopen. It must also manage its recovery while ensuring its department stores – an old retail model that has lost relevance to some shoppers – return to profitability. To do that, Mr. Baker says he has restructured operations, is embarking on a US$380-million cost-cutting program, and will launch a new e-commerce offering that includes same-day delivery to better compete with Amazon.com Inc. “I’m obviously bullish on the department store sector,” he said. Some industry observers are not so bullish, as other chains have found the pressure of three months of closings too much to bear. “The dinosaurs were already dying out, and the asteroid finally ended it. I think COVID is that asteroid,” said Eric Matusiak, a retail analyst at BDO Canada LLP. “I don’t think that department stores have much of a future in terms of their classic model.” STORY CONTINUES BELOW ADVERTISEMENT Mr. Baker says his department stores can evolve. While other chains are whittling down their bricks-and-mortar store numbers, Mr. Baker is instead rethinking the best use of space at the 89 Hudson’s Bay stores across Canada. Aside from a pending shutdown of the downtown Edmonton Hudson’s Bay location, he is not planning major changes in his store count. "We aren’t closing stores,” he said. Mr. Baker says a physical store presence is key to his ambitious goal to take on e-commerce goliath Amazon. Hudson’s Bay is planning a new service to ship online purchases to customers’ homes in approximately four hours. Having stores within 25 kilometres of 90 per cent of the Canadian population will let Hudson’s Bay ”service our customers better than any other retailer in Canada. And that includes Amazon,” Mr. Baker said. “Amazon can’t rent these distribution centres all over Canada, spend the money on delivery, do all the things that they do and actually make money,” he said. "We have the ability to leverage that store network in order to efficiently and economically provide our customers with same-day pickup in store or same-day delivery.” Mr. Baker would not elaborate on the logistics of doing so – such as whether the company plans to contract out same-day delivery to third-party companies the way Amazon does. Offering those services will be costly, but may be necessary to attract customers. Hudson’s Bay is also building an online marketplace to allow third-party sellers onto its site the way the likes of Amazon and Walmart do. “Consumers are changing their behaviours at a much faster pace because of [COVID-19],” said Alex Arifuzzaman, founder of retail real estate adviser InterStratics Consultants Inc. “It’s not going to go back to where it was.” But competition for online shoppers is steep. Many brands that used to depend on department stores have used e-commerce to build relationships directly with customers. And price competition is stiffer online. “Department stores were the Amazons of their time,” Mr. Matusiak said. With the rise of e-commerce, “there’s a better endless aisle out there.” Hudson’s Bay existed long before department stores did. The company, which celebrated its 350th birthday on May 2, started out as a fur trader and a colonizing force in Canada’s North. Today, the department store sector is very different here than in the United States, where bankruptcies have ramped up more quickly during the crisis. Domestic chains such as Simpsons, Eaton’s and Sears Canada disappeared years ago. Many of their former shoppers have been drawn to Walmart, Costco and Amazon. For the department stores that remain, one advantage is they generally pay cheap rent for their abundant square footage. “Usually these are very long term leases [are] negotiated at sweetheart deals because, as an anchor tenant, they are supposed to be driving traffic to the rest of the tenants on the property,” said Roelof van Dijk, market analytics director at CoStar Group, a commercial property company. But relations between landlords and tenants are fraying because of the pandemic. Landlords have begun sending out default notices to retailers that have not been paying rent, including HBC. Mr. Baker says HBC has extended its payment terms with vendors and landlords to 90 days, and discussions have been productive. But he also says a government relief program proposed by a coalition of retailers and landlords, including HBC, would help to “prevent a whole series of litigations” across the industry. As in-person shopping has become much more restricted and e-commerce continues to grow, it is in department stores’ interest to find alternative uses for their space. Curbside pickup has grown during lockdowns, and Mr. Baker believes the demand will continue. "I personally believe the big winners in online are going to be the brick-and-mortar retailers,” he said. “We are bullish and long on stores, as long as we maximize our productivity of the stores and bring our stores together with our online offering.” But all of those changes require investment. At the time of its last public filing, HBC was carrying just over $7-billion in total debt, including $3.94-billion in operating lease liabilities. After selling its European business last year, HBC paid down $429-million in debt, which strengthened its balance sheet, Mr. Baker said. “When we went private, we actually became a less leveraged company than we were as a public company,” he said. The value of HBC’s real estate, including prized locations such as the Saks Fifth Avenue in Manhattan, is one reason Mr. Baker says it’s “totally gobbledygook illogical” to challenge Hudson’s Bay’s financial strength or to suggest it may be in the same danger as other department stores. Mr. Baker has launched a sweeping cost-cutting program to slash the equivalent of more than $500-million in annual expenses. HBC also recently restructured, and is now 100-per-cent owned by a holding company based in Bermuda, a move it says was for tax purposes. HBC now has four businesses – Hudson’s Bay, Saks Fifth Avenue, Saks Off Fifth, and a real estate and investment arm. Formerly centralized functions such as store operations and marketing are now handled by the chains themselves. Hudson’s Bay is planning to “right-size and rethink” some of its real estate, including flagship stores in Montreal and Vancouver, “to create value beyond the store itself,” Mr. Baker said. “One of the reasons we went private was because people didn’t understand that we are a real estate company that owns three strong operating companies,” Mr. Baker said. “We’re not a department store chain. We’re a holding company that owns many billions of dollars worth of real estate; and we own [department stores].” With reports from David Milstead and Rachelle Younglai
  9. Deuxième grue going up.
  10. Man that's not going to age well ...
  11. With pro sports suspending activities the nightly recaps on TSN, Sportsnet, ESPN are going to be interesting to watch. If Europe follows not sure how they can keep those segments alive in the short term.
  12. Disons que c’est timide pour ce coin du cv.