Former brownfield site to be redeveloped into new residential and commercial units
Kitchener The former site of the City of Kitchener’s operation facility at 83 Elmsdale Dr. has officially been sold to NovaCore Communities Corporation in partnership with The Downing Street Group. NovaCore Communities is an award winning developer, specializing in transforming low value urban brownfield properties into high value residential and commercial developments. Downing Street is a Toronto based real estate merchant bank and asset manager which provides investment, transaction and asset management services across all classes of real estate. NovaCore and The Downing Street Group have partnered on three other brownfield transactions that are at different stages of remediation and development, the Elmsdale facility will prove to be another successful collaboration.
The City of Kitchener owned the Elmsdale facility and land situated at the corner of Ottawa Street and Elmsdale Drive since the 1950’s. It was primarily used for municipal and public utilities purposes until the city relocated into the Kitchener Operations Facility on Goodrich Drive in 2011. The approximately 12-acres site has since been vacant while the city sought out a new owner and suitable use for the property. Coldwell Banker Peter Benninger Realty Ltd. worked with the city to secure a purchaser with the same vision for the property, navigating the deal through a due diligence process.
“We wanted to ensure the property was bought by someone with the expertise and desire to convert this brownfield into something that fits with the surrounding neighbourhood and contributes to the community,” said Rod Regier, executive director of economic development with the City of Kitchener.
NovaCore’s vision for the property consists of a mixed use development made up of approximately 100,000 square feet of commercial, office and restaurant uses and multiple residential buildings. Since the property is a brownfield, their intention is to immediately remove the existing buildings and commence remediating the site.
“The partnership between the city and Novacore has been seamless,” said Tony Difruscio, president of Novacore Communities. “The transparency between both parties facilitated this process from start to finish. We look forward to working with the city on the redevelopment of this property and hopefully many more in the future.”
Novacore has completed an Official Plan amendment and zone change and has received approval through the City of Kitchener and Region of Waterloo Brownfields Financial Incentive Program. This program assists property owners and developers with costs associated with the environmental investigation and remediation of a brownfield site.