5 May 2011

Office space leased in Toronto drops in April

Though office space in the Toronto area has been taken up at brisk pace this quarter, the commercial real estate market in the GTA suffered a bit of a setback in the month of April.According to the Toronto Real Estate Board, 842,406 square feet of space was leased by commercial property hunters. That's a significant amount of space no longer available for rent, but it's down 27 percent compared to the same month last year, when 1,155,944 square feet of space was leased.Despite the downturn, Larry Purchase, chairman for the TREB's commercial division, said high demand will keep the market operating in the black."As the Canadian economy continues to expand in 2011, demand for commercial real estate is expected to remain healthy, albeit with some month-to-month volatility in transactions," said Purchase. "Exports are generally expected to make a larger contribution to growth this year, which is important for firms located in the GTA."Paperwork and important documents may pile up no…

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5 May 2011

The city of Toronto is filled with some of the brightest, most innovative minds in the world, and as such, several of them will soon be presented with honorary degrees.Later this month, soon after approximately 12,500 students graduate from the University of Toronto, their alma mater will recognize several people for contributions they've made to the city."The University of Toronto students, faculty, staff and alumni are committed to building stronger communities in Canada and throughout the world," said U of T president David Naylor. "These honorary degrees reflect and celebrate that commitment."The list of those receiving honorary degrees from the university includes Paul Martin, Sonia and Arthur Labatt, Koh Yong Guan and John Daniels. All of the award winners are…

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4 May 2011

Canada motorists sure do love their cars, as two recent sales reports from Kia and Subaru attest.According to Kia Canada, April was the best month ever for car sales in the country, as more than 6,000 vehicles were sold for the first time in the 11 years it's been serving the region."It is quite evident that Canadians continue to embrace our world-class design, technology and safety while appreciating the benefit of our fuel efficient vehicle lineup," said Maria Soklis, vice president and chief operating officer for Kia Canada.Not to be outdone was fellow Asian car manufacturer Subaru. The Japanese auto company performed well in Canada last month, as units sold surpassed 2,900 – a near 10 percent increase compared to…

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3 May 2011

Many Torontonians are fortunate enough to have their own bicycles, and because the cost of gasoline has been rising almost daily, more people are taking bikes out of storage units and using them as an alternative source of transportation.And thanks to a new program that just recently kicked off, bike owners won't be the only ones taking advantage of two-wheeled travel.The bike sharing program, BIXI Toronto, is now officially available to any and all residents of the GTA, as 1,000 bicycles are located at 80 stations throughout the downtown area. The cost is $40 for a month or $95 per year for regular users.Gian-Carlo Crivello, director of business development for the Public Bike System Company, recently described the perks of…

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3 May 2011

For people who have been keeping their broken down cars in storage units for any number of reasons, now may be the ideal time to get it fixed.That's because according to Warren Industries, an automotive supplier based in Concord, Ontario, it plans on hiring 66 more people, bringing their total employment to 200 and making parts more available.Sandra Pupatello, minister of economic development and trade, said the move will serve Ontarians, and the province's economy, well."This investment transfers work to Ontario from overseas and will provide good jobs and tremendous benefits for our province's automotive supply chain," said Pupatello.While Ontario's economy was adversely impacted by the global recession, it fared well compared to other provinces. According to the MEDT, Ontario…

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2 May 2011

Homebuilders in the Greater Toronto area received some well-deserved kudos this past weekend at an award ceremony held by the Building Industry and Development Association.The award ceremony is an annual event and is held to recognize homebuilders whose work has been extraordinary.The most prestigious award – the Home Builder of the Year – went to Mattamy Homes, marking the fourth straight year it received the coveted trophy. The company has been getting so many of them, it may need to put a few in a storage unit to make room for their new hardware.Another trophy went to Jeanhy Shim of Streetcar Developments for outstanding achievement in residential sales."As I look around the room and see so many of the industry's…

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29 Apr 2011

In the early morning hours on April 29, millions of people in Canada set their alarms to witness the marriage of Prince Edward and Kate Middleton. And in Toronto, many female viewers celebrated the occasion by heading to their storage units or closets, getting their favorite gowns and hats, and watching the rare event from a "royal" hotel."We're here to witness a moment in history," Jenny Andison said in an interview with Postmedia News. Andison was one of nearly 200 people who decked out the King Edward Hotel in the downtown section of the city to watch a wedding that could very well be the most widely-viewed nuptials in history.According to the news service, the 170 people in attendance plunked…

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28 Apr 2011

If you've been paying attention to the news and weather reports south of the border, then you know that much of the U.S. has received a devastating string of tornadoes that's led to the loss of thousands of homes and personal property items. But parts of the Greater Toronto area have received the remnants of those storms.Multiple reports have indicated that southern Ontario has received some whipping winds, with some wind estimates registering in excess of 100 kilometres per hour.Environment Canada issued a severe thunderstorm warning Wednesday and it remains in effect for Toronto and other southern parts of the province, as there have been several reports to the weather service about tornadoes touching down.As per usual when there's severe…

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28 Apr 2011

Due to the rise of the internet and the increasing popularity of tablets and iPads, many libraries across North America aren't frequented quite as much as they used to be. But that's not the case in Toronto. In fact, attendance there is so good, they're expanding yet again.The Toronto Public Library recently announced that it's planning to build a brand new 15,000-square-foot branch that will be built in the Trinity Spadina community, offering all the services that the main building provides.Among the amenities, the Trinity Spadina branch will house several meeting and study spaces and be fully furnished with internet technology, which will enable students, professionals and visitors to research, work and learn.The branch, which will become the Toronto Public…

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27 Apr 2011

A new report is making it abundantly clear that if people in the Toronto area want to rent or lease office space, they better do so quickly.According to Avison Young, Canada's largest commercial real estate company, demand for local office space has increased steadily since the end of the recession in 2009, with activity being particularly robust in the downtown and midtown portions of the GTA. For instance, the downtown Toronto area posted an 8.9 percent office availability rate, a two-year low, with vacancy rates even lower at 6.6 percent.Bill Argeropoulous, vice president and director of research for Avison Young, say the downtown figures testify to the health of the commercial real estate industry."All one has to do is look…

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27 Apr 2011

Jiffy Storage and virtually every other storage unit company in the country caters to people who have lots of things that they don't want to get rid of. But a Toronto woman is giving a new meaning to the word "packrat."Toronto police arrested a 63-year-old woman and charged her with animal cruelty after the Ontario Society for the prevention of Cruelty to Animals seized approximately 50 cats from her property.Authorities said when they arrived at the home, the property was covered in cat excrement and wreaked of urine.Officials said they were made aware of the woman, who's been identified as Diane Way, by pollsters who approached the entrance to the doorway and were overwhelmed by the stench. Toronto Police Detective…

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27 Apr 2011

f you've been paying attention to housing news in Toronto lately, you know that the city is awash in people moving into new homes. The Toronto Real Estate Board recently reported that home transactions rose significantly in the month of March and the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation indicated housing starts increased 17 percent.Not only is this is a good sign for the city's economy, but it's good news for the storage industry, as whenever people move, they always bring their belongings with them.But it's not always easy for busy families to move, especially if said families are seniors or have limited resources.That's where Jiffy comes in. Not only does Jiffy have the best storage units in the GTA, but…

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26 Apr 2011

Recently, the city of Toronto has received recognition from various mediums about being one of the world's most successful cities in the present day. But a new study indicates it's also a city of the future.According to Foreign Direct Investment Magazine's 'American Cities of the Future,' Toronto is among the cities with the most potential for further advancement. New York City, Chicago and Houston topped FDI's list, which was determined by a five-member panel assessing data from 405 cities. The criteria included economic potential, human resources, cost effectiveness, quality of life, infrastructure and business friendliness.The future isn't the only thing that Toronto thrives in. According to FDI magazine, it's also a North American leader in infrastructure and overall quality of…

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26 Apr 2011

Because businesses take up a lot of space, storage units are known for serving as an ideal venue for business owners to house their office belongings.But how many storage units double as an office space? Here at Jiffy, that's business as usual.With Jiffy Workspace, business owners have another place to get their work done. At any time, people can easily tailor their office space requirements on an as-needed basis, whether it's expanding because business has been booming or contracting because activity has slowed.Besides serving as an extra place to store another office's belongings, Jiffy Workspace also serves as an ideal location for business people to get more work done. All of our units are quiet and have internet access capability.…

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25 Apr 2011

Forty-one years ago on April 22, the world celebrated its very first Earth Day, an environmental holiday that was created in the hopes that people would become more aware of their surroundings and try to become better stewards of the earth. With this in mind, CBC News has come to some conclusions about how Canadians have treated Mother Nature after collecting data on air quality, greenhouse gas emissions and electricity consumption from various organizations. Some of the findings are good, but others may have people wanting to store their cars in their storage unit more often. For instance, the Canadian news service reports that greenhouse gas emissions have risen significantly over the past 20 years. According to figures released by…

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22 Apr 2011

Here at Jiffy, as professionals in the storage business, it's not uncommon for us to receive literally hundreds of questions from people who need assistance with their storage needs. From determining how big their storage unit should be, to rental rates, to wondering if our units can house collectible classic cars in the winter, the questions literally run the gamut.With these people in mind, we here at Jiffy want people to come to the right storage decision.Many people ask for specific dimensions for their items, when in actuality, they often overestimate the amount of space they actually need. Because our prices are contingent on how much space is rented, this can often lead to people spending more on a unit…

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21 Apr 2011

It looks like Toronto food vendors who were hoping to clean up on sales heading into the summer may be putting their equipment in storage units, as the city has said their services are no longer needed.Toronto a la Cart, the program food vendors were participating in, was supposed to diversify the kinds of foods offered in the Greater Toronto area, but the city's economic development department has recommended that Mayor Rob Ford scrap the project entirely because "it has not met its objectives and no improvement can be expected in the final year of the pilot." The program began three years ago after the passage of an amendment to the Health Protection and Promotion Act. Vendors say the program…

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20 Apr 2011

A Toronto man whose profession is devoted to cleanliness and order is a filthy rich man today.According to the Ontario Lottery and Gaming Corporation, John Addo, a Toronto janitor, hit the jackpot after scoring one of the three winning tickets in an April 15 drawing. Addo will take home $16.6 million before taxes.Addo, who's originally from Ghana, has been living in the Toronto area for the past 20 years and works seven days a week for an industrial cleaning outfit."I immediately went home and lay down for a while to think about it," the 50-year-old Addo told reporters recently. "Then I called a friend to come over so that I could tell someone."Addo is the latest Torontonian to net himself…

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19 Apr 2011

With the deadline to file taxes looming, Canadians from coast to coast are getting all their paperwork prepared so that they can report their income to the government. And if Canadian taxpayers are anything like Americans, they'd rather do almost anything else.According to the results of a recent U.S.-based OfficeMax study called "Tax it to Me," 45 percent of respondents said procrastination was the biggest hurdle to overcome when it comes to filing taxes on time. In fact, 40 percent of respondents said they would rather cut their own hair than do their own taxes.As a result, the survey found that nearly half – 48 percent – relied on someone else to file their taxes.But even when someone else does…

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