Colonnade BridgePort: Enriching and Enhancing Communities
Becoming part of a community means more than simply moving in. It requires commitment and understanding. To contribute, to truly belong, your presence should enhance the neighbourhood and enrich the lifestyle of those who already live there.
That commitment—to support the health and growth of the neighbourhoods in which it invests—is a guiding principle at Colonnade BridgePort, one of Ottawa’s largest and most respected commercial real estate companies. Simply put, says CEO Hugh Gorman, “it is why we do what we do.”
One of the things Colonnade BridgePort does is develop and manage attractive, efficient and modern apartment buildings. And it locates those apartment buildings in the most desirable locations in Ottawa. Increasingly, that means building along the city’s public transit corridors, specifically Ottawa’s newest light rail transit (LRT) hubs. “At Colonnade BridgePort, we believe that density and transit are key elements of any vibrant community,” says Hugh. “Through the strategic acquisition of land along the LRT route, we can create apartment buildings that will significantly increase that community’s liveability.”
“The alternative—more urban sprawl—is unsustainable,” he says. “And it cannot promote the more relaxed lifestyle found in high-density areas.”
Perhaps the most compelling example of Colonnade BridgePort’s innovative approach to modern living is Westboro Connection. Located at 315 McRae Ave, Westboro Connection combines quality office space, a satisfying selection of service-oriented retailers, and a wide selection of modern apartments. In addition, the building’s rooftop terrace provides residents with exceptional views of Westboro, the Ottawa River and the Gatineau Hills. Phase 2 of Westboro development is expected to open next year.
Another example is Hintonburg Connection. Scheduled to open in early 2020, the 19-storey apartment building is located in a trendy and heritage-rich neighborhood. To ensure it accurately reflects its unique surroundings—the area features boutique shops, eateries, markets, live theatre, and art galleries—Hintonburg Connection was designed with the artistic and creative professional in mind.
For Colonnade BridgePort, it’s satisfying to know that selecting locations along the LRT for its apartment buildings makes those communities more liveable. Even more satisfying is knowing that by creating opportunities and spurring investment, it is making those communities even stronger and more vibrant. “In healthy communities—those communities in which we prefer to invest— the eco-system is already in balance,” says Hugh. “We don’t want to disturb that balance. Rather, our goal is to contribute in a positive way.”
With that in mind, Colonnade BridgePort will continue to develop projects in areas that enhance existing communities. In today’s competitive marketplace, that also means attracting investment capital, as it did with the Westboro and Hintonburg projects. For both projects, Colonnade BridgePort approached Fiera Properties, one of North America’s leading independent asset management firms and a long-time partner in the company’s commercial operations. Fiera Properties shared Colonnade BridgePort’s vision, opting to invest significantly in both projects.
For Colonnade BridgePort, and for the communities in which it hopes to invest in the future, the connection to willing partners like Fiera is vital. The availability of desirable land is limited, and construction costs continue to rise. Despite the challenges, Hugh Gorman and the Colonnade BridgePort team are convinced that by focusing on the why, it will continue to successfully connect its residents to their city and community.