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TORONTO-In contrast to the short backward slide of the US market, Toronto’s office space actually saw a drop in vacancy in the third quarter 2010 to less than 10%, which hasn’t been seen since early 2009. The lease-up of four new office towers to about 10% vacancy helped the market, though Avison & Young experts say the focus is now on large blocks available in former bank buildings downtown.

Bill Argeropoulos, VP and director of Canada research for the company, says the movement seen but not proven in the second quarter finally came to roost in the third, with close to 2.5 million square feet of transactions, 70% being renewals and expansions, and 30% relocations. However, he tells GlobeSt.com that the 9.7% vacancy isn’t too wonderful, as space that’s currently occupied but being marketed boosts the potential vacancy to 11.6%. “It’s likely foreshadowing, the vacancy figure will probably tick up higher and peak in 2011 before it begins to retreat,” he says.

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