Toronto is ranked as one of the most livable cities in the world - and, more recently, one of the fastest growing in North America. As a young city (and country for that matter), we're like an adorable toddler undergoing a formative growth spurt!
As the globe shifts into one firmly rooted in the new post-industrial economies, Toronto is increasingly a hot spot for tech development and investment, mostly because we're on the zeitgeist of everything NOW. We're young, liberated, progressive, inclusive, tolerant, multi-cultural, forward-thinking, engaged, polite, respectful, competitive, fair and on the cutting edge of mood.
In fact, according to the Legatum Preosperity Index for 2018, Canada ranked 8th overall, but grabbed the top spot in 'personal freedom, and ranked 3rd in 'business opportunities'!
Toronto's Technology Ecosystem
According to this report from BMO Capital Markets, Toronto’s booming tech economy is so substantial, it is contributing heavily to the overall economic health of the province. It’s currently the fourth largest tech market in North America, outpacing tech hot spots like Seattle, San Francisco and Washington, D.C.
Also, a major draw for Toronto (versus some other U.S. based tech hubs) is a “common sense” immigration policy, which continues to draw high-end talent. Read “A 'Massive Advantage': Foreign Talent Bolsters Canadian Economy”.
The report cites that the main factor behind Toronto’s allure for the tech sector is the high concentration of calibre highly-educated talent to draw from. And in an industry that relies so heavily on innovation, this is crucial criteria. BMO says that this industry is poised to continue to grow in the GTA, due in part to the moderation in the housing market, which will help with affordability to draw new talent. According to a report from CBRE, more than 28,900 tech jobs were created in Toronto in 2017, which beats out San Francisco, Seattle and Washington, combined. That same firm rated Toronto as 'North America's fastest growing tech market two years in a row!
Toronto has caught the eye of a number of tech giants, including being recently shortlisted for Amazon HQ. Although the bid failed, pundits claim Toronto earned a strong consolation prize, with the whole campaign earning the city in the neighbourhood of $143 Million and significant media exposure.
In retrospect, we may have dodged a bullet, as financial analysts say tax breaks offered to large corporations rarely pay off for the host cities. Furthermore, a giant like Amazon may have flattened our fertile research-rich start-up friendly eco-system by absorbing a lot of the talent that is currently helping Canadian-born companies grow.
Amazon aside, we're definitely feeling the tech boom with Microsoft opening a huge Toronto HQ in 2020. This office will draw 500 jobs and up to 60,000 in the long term. Read, “Microsoft Is Opening A Huge Office In Downtown Toronto”.
Also, in 2017, Google-owned Alphabet’s Sidewalk Labs announced a partnership with Waterfront Toronto for Sidewalk Toronto, a cutting-edge innovation in urban development. Click here to read a story about that from my sister site, Houseporn.ca . This “smart neighbourhood” is still in the planning stages, but could very well encompass a number of cutting-edge technologies. Click here for an overview of the project in “The Alphabet Of Sidewalk Labs’ Plan For Toronto’s Waterfront”.
Here are some additional links sharing how “Toronto Is The 4th Largest Tech Market In North America” - and - “The Soul Of The New Economy Is Tech: 'Greater Toronto's Top Employers' For 2019 Are Announced
The growth of tech relies not only on economic and demographic support but on a commitment to research and innovation. In the latest wave of the tech boom, Canada - and Toronto in particular - is becoming known around the globe as “the” city for artificial intelligence. The University of Toronto, known for its drive behind innovation and research, has just announced the opening of a striking 750,000 square foot complex that will “turbocharge the next wave of Canadian innovation, advancing how A.I., biomedicine and other disruptive technologies can enrich lives”. Click here to read “How Canada Became A Hotspot For Artificial Intelligence Research” and “The University Of Toronto Is Building An Enormous New Innovation Complex”. When it is completed, the complex will be the “largest university-based innovation node of its kind” and serve as a major hub for student- and faculty-led startups in Canada.
This complex will not only figure prominently in the A.I. vertical in the world, but will also add a new visual dimension to U of T (whose downtown campus is noted for lovely scenery, historic monuments, and historic architecture). Click here to read my recent post about the University of Toronto and how it is a major player in the city and in the world.
The Toronto Real Estate Market
Toronto's physical growth, economic expansion, cultural fostering, and coming-of-age exuberance as a city is the perfect complement to the technology economy, which is also, too, only in its infancy. By tapping into the identity diversityToronto is renown, cultivates and celebrates, any technology company has the opportunity to capitalize on the city's synergy and channel it into developing its global brand. With a diverse cultural imprint (for example over 180 languages and dialects are spoken in Toronto, with 79 multi-lingual publications published in Toronto), having this cultural milieu provides the foundation for a company to expand its talent pool across the globe.
Plus, global citizens find us cool and hip as we read in Vogue's Cool Girl’s Guide to Toronto.
With Toronto's booming technology economy our real estate market - particularly within the original City Of Toronto - has an economic resilience we underestimate and, given the current pace of growth, forecasts a consistent rise in property values.
May we be of help? If the Toronto real estate market is on your radar, whether as a current homeowner or as a potential homebuyer moving to Toronto, it's important to lay out your house hunting or your selling strategies with the guidance of those who can see the big picture around your immediate goal. Like us! Well-liked, well-respected, and welcoming, the Urbaneer team take great pride in our excellence as realtors. Consider engaging us for a free consultation.
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