By Robert Frank
Quebec’s third-largest city is continuing to attract major business and residential investment.
As this week’s edition of The Suburban went to press, the newspaper learned that Fonds de Solidarité FTQ and Montoni Group were set to announce a massive, multi-purpose development opposite the Montmorency Metro station, March 31.
The site of the project is located near another major Laval endeavour, the Place Bell entertainment, sports and community centre complex, which is slated to be complete by late 2017.
According to a senior Fonds de Solidarité FTQ official, the architecture will lend a defining signature to Laval. Work is slated to start in 2015.
The offices-residential project might also include a modern hotel, the official said.
At press time, it remained unclear whether the residential component would comprise condominiums or rental units.
Most developers eschew building new rental accommodation because of the risk it entails. That has fuelled demand for high-quality rental properties.
Fonds de Solidarité FTQ has stood out among local developers for its willingness to build rental buildings, attract tenants and—once the project stabilizes—earn a hefty return selling the projects to investors like real estate trusts, which like the quality of the properties and the steady rental revenue.
Attracting more people and firms to Laval continues to soften the downtown Montreal real estate market, which has of late seen an infusion of new space.
Although Laval has not yet formally issued a construction permit, executive committee chair David de Cotis welcomed the infusion of capital.
“It will be the biggest project to invest in Laval, to the tune of $420 million,” he smiled. “It sends out the positive message that we’re open for business and that Laval has made a big turnaround since the new [municipal] administration was elected.”
“This will increase consumer confidence and help to attract other developers to invest in Laval,” de Cotis predicted.