Q1 2023: Edmonton Office Market Report

At the end of Q1 2023, vacancy in the overall Edmonton Market remained high at 20.14 percent, a 2.7 percent increase from the end of Q4 2022. Activity was concentrated in a few specific locations, including Stantec Tower in the downtown core and Commerce South Office Park on the south side. The flight-to-quality continued to be a trend across the market, with best-in-class assets leasing and the lower quality (or yet-to-be-upgraded) properties seeing little activity. Businesses continued to right-size with an emphasis on high-quality workspace and amenities to entice staff back to the office. There has been a shift to more businesses strongly encouraging their staff to return to the office, recognizing the value of in-person collaboration. This is a departure from a year ago when many large corporations were more flexible, giving staff autonomy. The various levels of government have mandated some level of return to in-person work, as anybody that frequents the Starbucks at Commerce Place will notice, with longer lines of provincial employees. However, the federal government continues to lag in this regard, as the Public Service Alliance of Canada continues to fight the government’s return to work order.