Crestpoint pays $92M for 50% stake in Ottawa’s 234 Laurier Ave. W. office tower

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Plaza 234 on Laurier Ave. W. Photo courtesy of Gillin Engineering.

Toronto-based Crestpoint Real Estate Investments has taken a 50 per cent stake in an office building at 234 Laurier Ave. W., a 26-storey tower occupied by Shopify’s growing Ottawa workforce.

Crestpoint paid $92 million to take over TD Asset Management’s and Slate Asset Management’s stakes in the downtown Ottawa office tower, according to CBRE senior vice-president Nico Zentil, who brokered the deal. Crestpoint now acts as a 50-50 partner with Gillin Engineering & Construction, which remains the building’s property manager.

The Plaza 234 tower was built in 1983 and renovated 30 years later, according to the 2019 BOMA Commercial Space Directory. Ottawa-based e-commerce firm Shopify has leased 18 floors in the downtown tower, around the corner from its Elgin Street headquarters, representing roughly 70 per cent of the building’s total 461,000 square feet of office space. 

When Shopify announced the 10-year lease in 2017, it said it planned to house an additional 2,500 employees at the building; the Ottawa tech giant announced late last year that it had officially surpassed 1,000 employees in the capital.

The building is also home to public-sector tenants. Previously, Plaza 234 served as the headquarters of Export Development Canada and was subsequently used as swing space by the Bank of Canada during renovations of its Wellington Street headquarters.

Crestpoint has been on an acquisition spree so far in 2020, acquiring a portfolio of three properties across Montreal and Calgary in a $190-million deal last month and another Montreal office tower in January.

Crestpoint did not immediately return OBJ’s request for comment Wednesday afternoon.