Ottawa industrial vacancy rate inches up to 5.1%

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Vacancies in industrial properties across Ottawa may have creeped up at the end of 2016, but a “surge” in companies looking for new space has brokers at one real estate firm feeling optimistic as the new year gets underway.

Colliers International recently reported that the citywide industrial vacancy rate climbed 20 basis points in the fourth quarter of 2016, rising from 4.9 per cent to 5.1 per cent.

Looking ahead, however, demand appears poised to rise, Colliers suggests.

“Many submarkets are experiencing an increase in tenant traffic,” the company said in a quarterly research report. “This surge of tenants searching for new space has brokerage advisors touring more spaces than before, a positive sign for the growing industrial market.”

Colliers says demand is highest for 5,000-square-foot and 10,000-square-foot pockets of space.

Geographically, properties west of downtown but within the Greenbelt and close to the Queensway – particularly in and around Bells Corners – remain highly sought-after by tenants, Colliers says.

This central-west submarket, which contains slightly less than a quarter of all the city’s industrial space, has the lowest vacancy rate in Ottawa at 2.5 per cent.