Cliff Peskin

Sept 24, 2010

Is it possible that Skype and other virtual office tools are taking a toll on the office market in Canada?

A new report from CB Richard Ellis Ltd. says vacancy rates for office space across the country are climbing; Canada’s overall vacancy rate for downtown and suburban office makets is now at 9.8% – up from 9.4% a year earlier.

The increasing number of empty offices is being attributed to a several factors, surprisingly, Skype is not one of them.

Cushman & Wakefield says Ottawa’s office market is climbing as three giant corporations Bell Canada, Sun Life, and EDS Canada shed their Ottawa office space requirements.

CB Richard Ellis says Vancouver office vacancies are being pushed up by construction in the suburbs.

John O’Bryan, vice-chairman of CB Richard Ellis, mentions “Uncertainty of the market from the start of the year” as contributing to the trend.

Maybe the effect is negligible but I’d like to see some discussion on how virtual commuters employing Skype or Google Talk may be impacting vacancy rates in Canada.

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