Trinity, Timbercreek buy central Ottawa properties in Main and Main portfolio purchase

381 Kent St.
The medical building at 381 Kent St. is one of the properties acquired by Trinity and Timbercreek. (Google Maps image)

The company leading the charge to redevelop LeBreton Flats and Bayview Station is adding an additional half-dozen central Ottawa properties, primed for greater density, to its portfolio.

Trinity Development Group has teamed up with Timbercreek – an investment firm with $7.5 billion in assets under management – to purchase the Main and Main Urban Realty portfolio, a joint venture led by First Capital. In a statement, First Capital said it closed the sale of 18 properties for aggregate gross proceeds of $298 million.

It includes six Ottawa properties, primarily in Centretown and Westboro, located at:

  • Richmond Road and Churchill Avenue;

  • Richmond Road and Island Park Drive;

  • 381 Kent St., at James Street;

  • 216 Elgin St., at Lisgar Street;

  • Preston and Pamilla streets; and

  • 236 Richmond Rd., just west of the LCBO and Real Canadian Superstore.

“They were all very choice locations and choice sites,” said Nico Zentil, a senior vice-president at CBRE’s national investment team, who represented the vendors in the transaction.

Some of the properties have existing structures on site but will likely be redeveloped eventually. For example, 381 Kent St. has a medical building surrounded by 114 surface parking spaces.

“The intent was to take advantage of the existing (income-generating buildings) and position the properties for higher and better use down the road,” Zentil said.

Trinity, along with the Ottawa Senators, is a partner in the Rendez-Vous LeBreton Group that’s negotiating with the National Capital Commission to construct a new NHL arena, residential units and commercial spaces just west of downtown.

And, just to the southwest, Trinity is also one of the proponents behind a planned $400-million mixed-use development consisting of three towers of between 50 and 59 storeys adjacent to the Bayview light-rail station.

Investors Group portfolio

In a separate transaction, Desjardins recently purchased an Ottawa industrial portfolio consisting of five properties totalling some 550,000 square feet from Investors Group.

The properties are:

  • 1225 Leeds Ave.;

  • 2070-2092 Walkley Rd.;

  • 3234-3270 Hawthorne Rd.;

  • 2405 St Laurent Blvd.; and

  • 1151-1181 Parsien St.

The buildings are multi-tenanted, with occupancy of more than 90 per cent, said Zentil. He represented Investors Group, which had owned the properties for several decades.

The $68.15-million acquisition marked Desjardins’ first significant foray into Ottawa’s industrial market, Zentil added.

The two deals come on the heels of a banner year for the city’s commercial real estate market.

Some $2 billion worth of assets traded in 2017, a five-year high. While a significant portion of last year’s sum was driven by the $480-million sale of Constitution Square, Zentil said 2018 is shaping up to be another busy year for the sector.

“We’ve got a number of deals on the horizon. And that’s indicative of what is going to be another strong year, certainly on the real estate front,” he said.