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Commercial Real Estate

Commercial Real Estate
Commercial Real Estate
Expertise / Practices / Commercial Real Estate
Top-tier national real estate practice with significant experience in major commercial real estate transactions, including large portfolio deals and co-ownerships. Extremely well-versed in joint venture development and purchases, financings and leasing, frequently acting for pension funds and other institutional clients, as well as foreign investors. Notably well placed to advise on the real estate and construction aspects of significant energy and infrastructure projects.

Clients praise: 'The team provides fantastic client service and sage advice. They have a clear understanding of our business and are eager to help my company realise its business goals.'
Chambers Canada: Canada's Leading Lawyers for Business 2020

Canada is valued for its economic stability, government regulatory transparency, strong private-property rights and low-volatility marketplace. This makes our country an attractive and highly competitive market for domestic and international investors in Canadian commercial real estate.

Blakes has one of the largest commercial real estate practices in Canada. Our lawyers’ breadth of knowledge of the Canadian commercial real estate market lets us offer seamless service on a complete spectrum of commercial real estate transactions, including acquisitions and dispositions, financing, development and leasing across Canada.

Clients rely on us to assist them with all their real estate requirements, from negotiating and drafting through dispute resolution and exit strategies including:

  • Ownership, investment and transaction structuring
  • Acquisition and disposition of all classes of real property assets, including office, retail, hotel, industrial, recreational and development properties
  • Financing, including long-term, construction and other loans and mortgage securitizations
  • Real property ownership structures, including joint ventures, partnership and shareholder arrangements
  • Cross-border investments
  • Leasing and asset management
  • Real estate investment trusts (REITs)
  • Construction and development agreements
  • Infrastructure projects
  • Workouts and restructurings

Our clients are Canadian, U.S. and other international institutional and private entities, developers, real estate advisers, banks, pension funds, fund managers, insurance companies, REITs, retail and other commercial property owners and occupiers, governments and government agencies, and hotel owners and operators. These clients have relied upon us in some of the most challenging and complex real estate transactions in recent years, some of which are listed below.

If you are an investor seeking to expand your real estate interests, our Real Estate lawyers can provide the cutting-edge, strategic advice you need.

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Recent Experience
  • DSV Solutions Inc. on the sale and leaseback of a 1.1-million-square-foot build-to-suit industrial logistics property at Yukon Court in Milton, Ontario.

  • Oxford Properties Group and CPPIB on the sale of the 650,000-square-foot Dynamic Funds Tower complex in downtown Toronto, Ontario.

  • Fiera Properties Ltd., on behalf of Fiera Properties CORE Fund LP, in the acquisition of four retail plazas in Waterdown, Guelph and Orangeville, Ontario; and Duncan, British Columbia, comprising in total approximately 925,000 square feet of leasable retail space.

  • Healthcare of Ontario Pension Plan on its joint venture with First Gulf for the construction of a new 460,000-square-foot, 23-storey tower, The Shift, on Ontario Street between King and Adelaide in downtown Toronto.

  • CREC Commercial Fund LP on its C$158-million purchase of a LEED Gold-certified 895,000-square-foot warehouse and distribution facility in Brampton, Ontario.

  • Ontario Pension Board and Workplace Safety Insurance Board on their C$1.9-billion purchase of an undivided 50 per cent interest in a 12-building portfolio of office buildings in downtown Vancouver, including the CF Pacific Centre regional shopping mall.

  • JCF Capital ULC on its acquisition of the debt on Trump International Hotel and Tower in Toronto, the enforcement of that debt, the acquisition of 211 hotel units and 74 residential condominium units, and the sale of the hotel portion of the tower to InnVest REIT.

  • Bell Canada and Rogers Communications on their C$1.3-billion purchase of a 75 per cent interest in Maple Leaf Sports and Entertainment.

  • Ontario Pension Board on its C$300-million purchase of a 50 per cent interest in the RBC Centre, a 41-storey class AAA Toronto office building, and negotiation of a joint venture arrangement with Ontrea Inc.

  • PCC Properties (Calgary) Ltd. and its joint-venture co-owner on their C$370-million first mortgage bond financing of the Suncor Energy Centre, a two-tower office complex in downtown Calgary, Alberta, consisting of 32- and 53-storey class AA office buildings.

  • GWL Realty Advisors Inc. on its acquisition and development of the Southcore Financial Centre, a mixed-use retail, office and hotel project being constructed in downtown Toronto, including 26- and 30-storey office towers and a 566-room four-star Delta hotel.

  • TransGlobe REIT on its privatization by Starlight Investments Ltd. and sale of 14 multi-unit residential properties in Ontario, Quebec and Nova Scotia to Canadian Apartment Properties REIT; 26 multi-unit residential properties in Ontario, Quebec and Alberta to Timbercreek Asset Management Inc.; 63 properties in four Canadian provinces to Starlight and its affiliates; and the 72 remaining REIT properties to a joint venture comprised of Starlight and the Public Sector Pension Investment Board.

Awards & Recognition

Members of the Blakes Commercial Real Estate team are recognized as leaders in their field in the most recent editions of the following publications:

  • Chambers Canada: Canada's Leading Lawyers for Business – Ranked in Band 1

  • The Canadian Legal Lexpert Directory (including all aspects of Property Development and Property Leasing)

  • Who’s Who Legal: Real Estate (Highest number of lawyers ranked in Canada)

  • Who’s Who Legal: Canada (Real Estate – Highest number of lawyers ranked)

  • Legal Media Group's Guide to the World's Leading Women in Business Law

  • Legal Media Group's Guide to the World's Leading Construction and Real Estate Lawyers

  • The Legal 500 Canada – Ranked in Tier 1

  • The Best Lawyers in Canada

Blakes has been named Real Estate Law Firm of the Year for 2021 by Best Lawyers.

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