Recent Newsletters

Big Things Happening at Summerside’s West End


 
West End Industry Corridor (WEIC)
 
A popular topic lately in Summerside has been commercial space. Our 2020 Annual Report and our previous newsletter are rife with numbers and observations about how our space inventories have decreased over the past two years, like how a retail vacancy rate that was once 9% two years ago is now 3%. Similarly, the office vacancy rate went from 14% to 4%. Taken together, this represents a net absorption of 165,000 sq ft.
 
Finding space has been the number one request from our department since 2020. Before that, there was a variety of space available and most found their way around without much assistance. Now, however, it’s rarely that straightforward, as choices have become limited and property managers and owners routinely receive several inquiries per week. Buildings that were vacant for years, or even decades, are now full and have waiting lists.


 

 
 
There is much opportunity for property owners to create or repurpose space; as such, we are pleased to announce a major addition to Summerside’s commercial and retail space. 30 Greenwood Dr. has recently been bought and the building that everyone once knew as “Johnston Tire” is being repurposed as a new commercial and retail space.
 
Chris Palmer and Blake Doyle, the building’s owners, are very familiar with how Summerside is changing and seized the opportunity. In the coming months, this building will add 18,000 sq ft of business space in a rapidly expanding part of town, namely MacKenzie Dr. and Putters St., where both subdivisions have sold out and houses are going up like crazy. The WEIC is expected to be complete in late Summer 2021 but inquiries are welcome in the meantime.
 

Quick Facts:

Address:           30 Greenwood Dr.
Contact:           Chris Palmer, email: chris@theweic.com, ph.: 902-315-2345
Availability:       7 retail units (approx. 1,500 sq ft each)
                         10 office units (ranging from 100–550 sq ft each)


 
More information is available from either the above contact
or from Neil Moore (neil@summerside.ca).





Wyndham Microtel 80-Room Hotel
 
About 1,000 yards from Summerside’s Business Commons, PEI’s First Green Industrial Park, will be a new 80-Room Hotel attached to Credit Union Place (CUP). For over a decade, the CUP has been a top-notch venue for events of all kinds, from sports to concerts to conferences. Having a hotel as part of its offering has been the plan since the beginning but making the case and finding the right partners takes time.
 
Considering the number of major events in Summerside, not to mention things like business travellers and tourists, the CUP is a natural choice for hotel rooms since it already boasts a slate of amenities, such as event venues, restaurants, fitness centre, walking track, pool, racetrack, a large parking lot, and much more. Taken together, the CUP could be considered the heart of the entire City.
 
The original announcement was made in July 2019, but the onset of the global pandemic delayed any construction until June 2021. The plan now is to reach completion by Summer 2022. By that time, holding events and travelling ought to resemble their full, pre-pandemic levels.




 
The beautiful part about the hotel is that it will increase the capacity of what the CUP already does: the hotel will allow more concerts, more conferences, more visitors, and more sporting competitions. Bidding on events is more likely to be successful with on-site accommodations. Opportunities that once would have slipped past Summerside can now be properly executed.
 
Quick Facts:

Hotel Builder:                RCS Construction
Operated by:                 Microtel Inns and Suites by Wyndham
Cost:                              $10—$11 Million
Jobs Created:               100 during construction, 30 ongoing
# Rooms:                       80
# Floors:                        4
Time to Completion:      12–14 months

 
New Jobs Coming at MILA Supply Corporation
 
MILA Supply Corporation is a Canadian cannabis infusion company based in BC that provides solutions to Consumer Packaged Goods (CPG) brands. MILA focuses on using sustainably sourced raw material and clean technology to provide alternative solutions to the food, beverage, and beauty industries.
 
They expressed interest in expanding to Summerside a few years ago. Keaton MacLean, MILA’s Co-Founder and CTO, has connections to Summerside and decided to investigate our City as a possible expansion location.
 
After extensive conversations and securing key staff positions, MILA decided to buy the former Wiebel Aerospace Building at 175 Greenwood Dr., a building that had been for sale since 2016. Like most plans, the COVID pandemic slowed their progress but now it’s time to forge ahead.
 
MILA is looking to fill the following positions:
 
— Plant Operations Manager
— Plant Bookkeeper
— Production Assistant (multiple opportunities)

 
Whether you’re living here now, used to live here, never lived here, or have a family member or friend that you think could be a good fit, reach out! We can connect you to the appropriate people for the job that interests you. For job descriptions, contact Neil Moore at neil@summerside.ca to get things rolling.
 
 
Lion Electric’s Next Den Could be Summerside
 
Lion Electric is an innovative manufacturer of zero-emission vehicles. They design, manufacture, and assemble all components, including chassis, battery packs, cabin, and powertrain. Lion Electric is a leading OEM in transportation electrification in North America.
 
Zero-emission vehicles represent a trendy and timely intersection between technology, environment, and transportation. Given our relentless interest in green energy and initiatives, it should come as no surprise that a company that makes EV trucks and buses got our attention and vice versa.
 
Not only are we intrigued by Lion’s offering, but the Province of Prince Edward Island is as well, already having bought several EV buses. Given this level of interest, it makes sense to base staff here to showcase and sell the technology from Summerside, a place of energy-management excellence.
 
If you are an experienced salesperson and wish to join an established company, then apply for the Sales Manager School Bus (Atlantic) position. For a job description, contact Neil Moore at neil@summerside.ca.


 

Building Permits Build the Future
 
Now that 2021 is just over half done, it’s a good time to check in with building permits.

Source: City of Summerside, Dept. of Technical Services
*Note: 2021 is complete up to and including June 30


 
Ordinarily, a grand total exceeding $20M would be considered a good year while anything above $30M is exceptional. The fact that we have crested $30M in just the first half of 2021 ($34.2M) is especially encouraging. Also noteworthy is that Commercial/Industrial for 2021 has already exceeded the yearly totals for all other years plotted. This is true for Institutional as well except for 2017 where Three Oaks Senior High School was renovated.
 
2019 marked the beginning of a popular trend with residential development, particularly new construction. Many people are moving here, real estate is popular like never before, and whatever gets built is spoken for before the lawn is even fully grown.
 
Surprisingly, residential permit values increased from 2019 to 2020 despite all the confusion and uncertainty brought on by COVID. As for 2021, that number is likely to increase again. As of now, the 2021 YTD residential total is 34% higher than it was one year ago while the grand total is 145% higher.

 
New Residential Construction (2016–2021)

*Note: 2021 is complete up to and including June 30
 
Clearly, the abundance of new construction has driven the increase in residential permit values from 2019 onward. The modest numbers of 2016 have been eclipsed in the years since and as row housing projects, apartment buildings, and new subdivisions continue to succeed, they tend to create other similar projects and carry on the momentum.
 
Besides this new residential construction and much more on the way, other noteworthy investments of 2021 include a major addition to the Summerside Butcher Shop, an addition to Ecole-sur-Mer by the French School Board, the new 80-room hotel mentioned in the above article, and the new Multipurpose Recreational Dome being built next to the CUP.
 
Summerside has been breaking its own records lately and our permit activity will be yet another.

 
Summerside in Numbers




If interested in learning more about investment opportunities, economic development support or opportunities for growth, please call our Economic Development Professionals.
We would love to chat.

Alternatively, you can email us at mike@summerside.ca
It could be 
the most profitable email you ever send.

Michael Thususka
Director of Economic Development City of Summerside
275 Fitzroy Street, Summerside PE C1N 1H9
M: 902.432.0103, E: mike@summerside.ca


LET’S BUILD THE FUTURE TOGETHER!