student housing

ASH REIT expands Ontario student housing portfolio

Tuesday, April 2, 2019

Alignvest Student Housing (ASH REIT) announced it has purchased a portfolio of four high-quality purpose-built student accommodation (“PBSA”) properties located in Waterloo, Hamilton and Oshawa. This acquisition brings the REIT’s total bed count up to over 3,300 PBSA beds across seven highly-amenitized properties for an asset base approaching $400 million.

“We are excited about adding these high-quality properties to our current portfolio,” said Sanjil Shah, Managing Partner. “This purchase maintains our best-in-class approach to the student housing market and elevates our platform to be a significant owner/operator of university student housing in Canada”.

ASH REIT has been a leading consolidator in the institutional-grade student housing market in Canada since its inception in June 2018. The company remains committed to the consolidation of the fragmented sector and is in conversations with owners of additional high-quality properties across the country.

333 and 339 King Street North, Waterloo, Ontario – King Street Tower I & II

King Street Tower I is a PBSA property located approximately 400 metres from Wilfrid Laurier University and 800 metres from the University of Waterloo. King Street Tower I is a 17-storey modern building that was built in 2011 with 536 beds in 126 fully-furnished units, is 100% occupied as of March 2019 and 100 per cent pre-leased for the 2019/20 school year.

King Street Tower II is a PBSA property adjacent to King Street Tower I. The 21-storey modern building was built in 2013 with 419 beds in 80 fully-furnished units, is 100% occupied as of March 2019 and 100 per cent pre-leased for the 2019/20 school year.

The two properties offer the highest-quality amenities in the Waterloo market, including exercise facilities, games rooms, study rooms, conference/boardrooms, a computer centre, a theatre room, a rooftop patio with a fire pit, tanning beds, saunas and several other attractive offerings. The two buildings currently operate as a single entity and consist of an optimal mix of suite configurations ranging from 3 to 5-bedroom units.

1686 Main Street West, Hamilton, Ontario – West Village Suites

West Village Suites is a LEED Platinum certified property and is the only PBSA property in Hamilton serving McMaster University’s 31,000 students. The property was built in 2008 and has established itself as the “go-to” off-campus housing in the market. West Village Suites is located close to campus and is adjacent to many shops and restaurants that are targeted to McMaster students.

The 9-storey building has high-end amenities for its tenants, including a fitness studio, various study rooms, student lounges, games rooms, a yoga studio and ~12,000 sq. ft. of ancillary ground floor commercial space. The building offers a mix of 2- to 5-bedroom units with a total of 449 beds in 107 units, is 100 per cent occupied as of March 2019 and 100 per cent pre-leased for the 2019/20 school year.

1700 Simcoe Street North, Oshawa, Ontario – Village Suites Oshawa

Village Suites Oshawa is a LEED Gold certified purpose-built student accommodation located approximately 600 metres from the main campus of the University of Ontario Institute of Technology (“UOIT”). UOIT has  approximately10,000 students and shares its campus with approximately 8,000 students enrolled at Durham College, creating a total targeted tenant base of close to 17,000 full-time students.

The property consists of one modern 6-storey building and an attached modern 4-storey building, which were both built in 2010. There is a total of 588 beds in 133 units with a mix of 3 to 5-bedroom configurations and over 4,000 sq. ft. of ancillary ground floor commercial space. The building offers its tenants high-end amenities, including a fitness studio, various study spaces, student lounges, games rooms, a yoga studio, is 95 per cent occupied as of March 2019 and is well ahead of last year’s September occupancy targets.

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