Downtown opportunities for home buyers

WinnipegREALTORS® is a sponsor of the Downtown Winnipeg BIZ’s Downtown Living Tour which has been held for the past four years. WinnipegREALTORS® also had a booth this year at the new Manitoba Hydro Building to show Winnipeggers what condos are currently for sale in the downtown MLS® area.

The downtown always figures prominently among the issues championed by the WinnipegREALTORS® civic and legislative affairs community. Expansion of the Winnipeg Convention Centre is something we feel is very important, especially in light of the new Canadian Museum for Human Rights. The musuem will attract thousands of  visitors and has the great potential to be a catalyst for spin-off events for the expanded Convention Centre, with a new hotel playing a supportive role. 

Another key issue is the creation of a safe vibrant downtown, emphasising increased downtown living opportunities. No one is more passionate about the downtown and its possibilities than Downtown BIZ executive director Stefano Grande, the author of the following commentary on living in the city’s central core. 

Living downtown

For the last three years, the Downtown BIZ and our partners have teamed up with downtown REALTORS® and housing developers to promote the new and exciting places to live downtown.  From rentals to condos, almost 2,000 people took in the Downtown Living Tour on June 26, getting a sneak peak at some exciting residential projects such as YouCube and Sky Waterfront Condominiums located on the Waterfront Drive, as well as the new Penthouse conversion on Princess Street.

Our Downtown Living Tour and Exhibition has taken place for the past four years, and during that time, well over 3,000 new residents have made the downtown their home. There are now more than 16,000 people living in our downtown!  And judging by the growing optimism towards the rebirth of downtown, along with more than 1,000 new rental or condo units for sale that are under or about to commence construction, the downtown is poised to become one of the fastest-growing neighborhoods in the city.

In a short 10 years, the average cost of a downtown condo has doubled, making buying in our downtown a solid investment. The new product we will see in the next few years will meet the needs of young professionals and empty-nesters — the primary markets for downtowns in general.

Having lived downtown, I can tell you a few things from experience.

If arts and culture or music and theatre are your thing in life, then finding a downtown pad is a must.  The fringe benefits of walking to The Forks, the library, and a multitude of sport, concert and entertainment venues, all connected to an indoor walkway system that means you don’t even have to go outside in winter, is enough to make all your friends envious. And you won’t find a historic converted warehouse with brick walls anywhere else in the city.

Groceries?  I can personally show you where to find ingredients at one of downtown’s numerous grocery stores to create a scrumptious pad thai or fresh tomato sauce with homemade gnocchi. If you’re not much of a chef, then you can literally eat at a different restaurant in downtown every night of the year. It’s all within a 15-minute walk of your home sweet home.

I can also tell you that downtown is getting better and better every day. Events like the Downtown Living Tour not only showcase new places to live, but also put many people in touch with the local residents who opened their homes and shared their own downtown living stories. 

While the tour has come and gone, if downtown living is appealing to you, phone your local REALTOR® and ask for your own personal tour.