Archives from February 2014

For such a real estate rich city, Vancouverites have some fairly backwards attitudes, witnessed most recently in the vehement and emotional outbursts opposing high-density developments along transit lines. Citizen uprisings in Marpole and Grandview-Woodland have the city backtracking on its densification plans.

But the fact is we are a quickly growing city. By the year 2036, our population will grow by another 30%. If we want to have a more affordable, balanced and diverse community, we need densification. Period. The question is only: where do we densify?

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Congratulations again to our very own, Andrew Hungerford for winning Business in Vancouver's Forty Under 40!

Andrew Hungerford excelled both athletically and academically before joining his family's rapidly expanding real-estate business, Hungerford Properties, in 2008.

Hungerford, a former winner of Canada's national rowing championship, also has an MBA from Stanford University, a B.Comm from Queen's University and designations as both a chartered accountant and a chartered financial analyst in Canada and as a certified public accountant in the U.S.

In the 13 years Hungerford has been in the real-estate business, he has acquired or managed more than $3 billion worth of real estate globally.

Hungerford Properties, where he is an equal partner alongside father George and brother Michael, is about to go on an acquisition tear.

"We've just raised an institutional real estate equity fund of $120 million, which has the potential to acquire $400 million worth of properties," he said.

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CALGARY - A Vancouver developer is pouncing on a growing trend  in Calgary of owners wanting to own the locations where they do business.

On Wednesday, Hungerford Properties launched its latest business condo project - the Nexus Business Centre in the Meridian/Franklin area of northeast Calgary.

“As a business owner, and being one myself, I’d rather be paying myself rent than somebody else and I can build equity in my business. I have greater control over expansion and contraction. I control my own destiny. What I invest in the space I’m creating value for myself. I’m not creating value for somebody else. I think ultimately that’s control and investment and just general pride of ownership,” said Michael Hungerford, partner with the Vancouver company, who was also in Calgary this week for an open house for the new Icon Business Park project at the former Haworth building which the company bought last year.

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CALGARY - When Vancouver real estate developer Michael Hungerford first saw the massive former Haworth building which was for sale in Calgary, he had one initial thought.

“This is a building that has an impressive first impression,” he said, of the structure which was originally built by Calgary entrepreneur Mogens Smed. “It’s got quality literally dripping from it. There was no expense spared in the design and the quality of it. So my first reaction was this is a sleeping giant if you will. This is a real opportunity that somebody with some passion and some vision can really exploit and that’s what we’re doing.”

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It was once one of Calgary’s biggest buildings, but it’s been mostly vacant for the past four years. That’s about to change. The SMED manufacturing plant is undergoing a huge makeover, to take advantage of a growing industry. Doug Vaessen got inside for an exclusive look.

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