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Merkburn Holdings opens new Kanata North co-working space


As businesses across the city look for more flexible office space options, one of the National Capital Region’s largest commercial real estate owners is opening a new 10,000-square-foot co-working space in the heart of the city’s largest tech park.

Merkburn Holdings’ Catalyst Kanata Business Center – located on the second floor of 62 Steacie Dr. in Kanata North – gives tenants access to a host of modern office configurations, ranging in size from dedicated single workstations to multi-person offices.

Its launch comes at a critical time for the city’s business community. Many organizations are looking to safely offer employees a professional workspace in which they can collaborate with clients and colleagues, without the commitment of signing a long-term lease.

The co-working office – set to open this spring – is the latest project for Merkburn Holdings, an Ottawa-based commercial property owner and manager with more than 50 years of experience and close to one million square feet of commercial space in its portfolio.

Outfitted with a kitchen, board room and several meeting rooms, Catalyst Kanata is the first co-working project for the firm, says Kevin Rougeau, managing partner at Merkburn Holdings. Given the building’s location and its proximity to businesses looking for new workplace options, it was the perfect opportunity to design a space with all of the lessons learned from the pandemic in mind.

“We approached this project knowing what features and design practices would be necessary to keep people safe and comfortable while at work,” he says. “It was all about being proactive as opposed to reactive, which makes this location really stand out on the market.”

‘A third workspace’

With many employees poised to return to their offices this year, companies are seeking cost-effective real estate solutions that give staff the option to divide their workweek between home and commercial office space.

Co-working spaces provide that flexibility.

At Catalyst Kanata, individuals or companies can lease space on a monthly or annual basis, eliminating the financial commitment of signing a long-term agreement.

Additionally, costly services such as security, internet access, video conferencing equipment, cleaning and initial setup costs of office infrastructure are also included in the package, which can reduce a company’s initial capital outlay and monthly overhead, says Rougeau.

The building at 62 Steacie Dr. is also fully equipped with hand sanitizer stations, enhanced cleaning standards and managed HVAC to optimize the clean air coming into the building.

“Most people will always need an office space, but now the approach to how and where people work is very different,” Rougeau says, adding that many employees currently working from home are searching for a workspace between home and a traditional office. “There is a definite trend towards better work-life balance, and co-working can be a third workspace option that offers unparalleled flexibility.”

With keyless-entry technology, increased cleaning and controlled access to the building, clients at Catalyst Kanata can work from the space at any time of day, providing an additional level of flexibility.

The building also has on-site showers, bike racks and nature paths nearby, as well as a childcare centre in close proximity.

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The Merkburn advantage

With decades of commercial management experience, the team at Merkburn Holdings has the knowledge and skills to create a functional work environment for any sector, says Rougeau.

While there is a strong tech presence in Kanata North, the new co-working office is the ideal location for any business looking for a fully-equipped move-in ready workplace, or simply a touchdown station for employees.

As companies across the city continue to rethink their office setup, Rougeau says he sees Catalyst Kanata as an opportunity to provide businesses with tailored solutions to meet their needs.

Clients at the new co-working office will also have the advantage of direct communication with Merkburn’s facility managers, ensuring any issues can be resolved quickly and efficiently.

“We are a hospitality-driven company, and we pride ourselves on our customer service and ability to deliver a great work experience,” Rougeau says. “We’ve worked with businesses in the capital for the last 50 years and we are excited to be providing employees yet another option for the future.”