Canadian real estate property owner Cadillac Fairview has begun construction of a 288-unit residential rental building attached to its flagship CF Rideau Centre, Ottawa’s largest and busiest shopping mall.
It is the company’s first major investment in a residential rental building in Canada.
“CF’s Rideau Registry residences will offer a rental product that is unique and will stand out as Ottawa’s most-sought after address through innovative design and suite layouts, extensive amenities and professional management,” said Wayne Barwise, Executive Vice President, Development, Cadillac Fairview. “But just as importantly, we’re proud to continue contributing to the creation of a vibrant and connected community in downtown Ottawa.”
Brian O’Hoski, General Manager of the CF Rideau Centre, said the company is hoping to have the new residential tower ready for occupancy by 2026. The standalone building will have direct access to the shopping centre at the streetfront level.
“We have an existing entrance and that entrance will be repurposed to be the new entrance from both the residential tower and the street level,” he said.
The Ottawa shopping centre is about 1.2 million square feet with about 180 stores.
CF Rideau Centre recently opened a new Indigo store as well as a newly-expanded larger footprint lululemon and a Hugo Boss. Oak and Fort and Aerie could open before Christmas as well.
“There are two big ones (in the coming year) but I’m not in a position to announce them. But we do have some exciting news coming up very shortly,” said O’Hoski, of additional retailers coming to the Ottawa shopping centre.
“We’re a downtown urban property so we’re certainly encouraged by the sales we’re seeing return. We are still missing some of that weekday office worker traffic but it seems that the retailers have found ways to make up and we’re certainly encouraged by the sales we’re seeing.”
The development of a residential rental component to its property is part of CF’s strategy of expansion and diversification of its Canadian property portfolio through densification of its existing mixed-use assets.
“In addition to its thoughtfully designed rental apartments and extensive amenities, the project will also feature the transformation of Ottawa’s historic Registry Office into a modern café-bistro, significant public realm improvements, and an enhanced entrance to the shopping centre. The building will be seamlessly connected to CF Rideau Centre, providing unparalleled access to shopping, dining and entertainment, as well as direct access to several of the city’s public transit options, including the O Train,” said Cadillac Fairview.
“The introduction of the rental residences at CF Rideau Centre is the next phase of an ambitious redevelopment program that began seven years ago, when CF invested $360 million to transform and revitalize the property, which included a four-level expansion, a new dining hall and a complete facelift including a range of enhancements and upgrades, new public art and a rebuilt pedestrian bridge over Rideau Street.
“The redevelopment also introduced a new wing which incorporated the historic Ogilvy Building. The preservation and integration of the historic Registry Office building as part of the new residences similarly presents an exciting opportunity to celebrate this historic building by featuring it as an important part of the residential project.”
O’Hoski said residents of the new tower will appreciate the amenities that CF Rideau Centre has to offer. It’s one of the selling points for the residents.
“We’ve done a lot of condos. I think we’ve built over 6,500 condominium units across CF and our entry into residential is a thoughtfully planned extension of the significant reinvestments in the redevelopment activity within and around Rideau. It made sense.
“We do have an additional density available to us in the Red Parking Garage. That is a parking structure that would provide future development if that makes sense to us.”
Wholly owned by the Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan, CF manages more than f$42 billion of assets across the Americas and the United Kingdom, with further expansion planned into Europe and Asia. Internationally, CF invests in communities with like-minded partners, including Stanhope in the UK, Lincoln Property Company in the U.S., and Multiplan in Brazil.
The company’s Canadian portfolio comprises 68 landmark properties, including the Toronto-Dominion Centre, CF Toronto Eaton Centre, Tour Deloitte, CF Carrefour Laval, CF Chinook Centre and CF Pacific Centre.