Halifax’s Killam REIT acquires 50% interest in RioCan’s Elmvale Acres site

Elmvale Acres
A rendering of the proposed development near Elmvale Acres Shopping Centre.

The two real estate investment trusts building a series of apartment towers near the Blair LRT Station are joining forces on another mixed-use development in Ottawa’s southeast end.

Toronto’s RioCan announced Tuesday it has sold off a 50 per cent interest in a portion of its Elmvale Acres property next to the shopping centre on St. Laurent Boulevard to Halifax-based Killam Apartment REIT. The deal will see Killam pay $3.7 million for its stake in the 1.45-acre site, based on $45 per buildable square foot of expected future density.

RioCan is working towards a multi-phase development on the current site of the Elmvale Acres Shopping Centre, which when complete will feature 570 residential units and 123,000 square feet of retail space. The REIT received zoning approval for the redevelopment in 2017 and submitted site plans for phase one this past summer.

Killam’s deal applies only to this first phase of the development, which will see 168 residential units in a nine-storey tower sitting atop a one-storey podium slated for retail space. Servicing and demolition work on the site, which was occupied by a Kelsey’s restaurant and surface parking lot, began last month.

Killam and RioCan are also working together on the Frontier development just steps away from the Blair LRT Station in Gloucester. 

RioCan provided an update on that project as part of its announcement, noting 85 per cent of the 228 units built in the development’s first phase are leased. Given the “better-than-expected” early performance of the development, construction has started on the 209-unit second phase with work slated to finish in 2021.

The two REITs also have a 50-50 split on a similar shopping centre project in Charlottetown, and RioCan announced another partnership Tuesday with Boardwalk REIT to sell off a 50 per cent stake in a Mississauga development.