With a full house of industry professionals, AWF’s annual Real Estate Forum on June 7, 2016 at the Rosewood Hotel Georgia was a big success. The event was sponsored by Deloitte with Jennifer Podmore Russell, Director of Real Estate as our moderator. After networking and a delicious lunch, the speaker panel got right into a lively discussion. Our 2016 panel consisted of:
Cathy Grant - Senior Vice President, Marketing & Sales, Intracorp
Jarvis Rouillard -Vice President, Investments, Triovest
Beau Jarvis - Senior Vice President, Developments, Wesgroup Properties Ltd.
Leeanna Petrik - Senior Associate, Avision Young
Jennifer Podmore Russell (Moderator) - Director, Deloitte Real Estate
2016 marks 30 years since Vancouver hosted Expo 86. “30 years ago we gave our business card out to the world, they kept it, and they kept coming back”, exclaimed Jennifer Podmore Russel. Since then the city has seen exponential change. In 86 Vancouver was a sleepy Westcoast town practically unknown to the rest of the world. Now, Vancouver continuously tops the list of most livable cities in the world, hosts a plethora of international events, and acts as a hub for tourism, tech, and industry.
The panelists were asked about the changing city scape, and the entire panel agreed that transit has been a main driver of change. Cathy Grant sees the era of the car coming to an end. Beau Jarvis indicated that mixed use developments around transit hubs is crucial to meeting the demand of a growing population. Adding to this, Jarvis Rouillard stressed that appropriate densification is needed around transit hubs or ridership will fall short. There is no doubt that transit in all forms will play a key role in sustaining the growth of our city for years to come.
The panel also discussed how the millennial generation is starting to shape decision making in the industry. Specifically, Leeanna Petrik explains how as generation Y becomes the dominate group in the workforce, we see office space being designed differently. Office space is being designed to be flexible, collaborative and cool. Furthermore, as millennials become first time home buyers, the topic of “affordability” is on everyone’s minds. The panel agreed that increasing supply and changing expectations of the typical “house” will continue to be solutions to alleviate pressure on affordability.
We hope all our guests in attendance had an amazing time at this year’s event, and we look forward to seeing you in November and throughout the 2016/2017 season!