The GTA market had a quiet second quarter of 2019 with absorption recorded at 139,738 SF as compared to 503,754 SF the previous quarter. The availability rate remained steady at 5.7% and the average asking net rental rate increased 2.7% QoQ to $19.59. Moreover, the vacancy rate increased 20 bps to 4.1%, with the Downtown market seeing the same increase, reaching 1.3% in Q2 2019.
On a provincial and municipal level, there were numerous legislative changes this quarter. Notably, the introduction of Bill 108, the More Homes, More Choices Act, is reinstating the rules of the Ontario Municipal Board (OMB) and awarding the Local Planning Appeal Tribunal (LPAT) with the ability to override municipal decisions. In addition, changes for City of Toronto Official Plan are in store, expanding areas for development and permitting buildings of 20 to 35 storeys to be constructed in Midtown and near transit hubs.