Calgary retail insight – Fall 2022

Retail leasing activity in Calgary has remained steady over the summer with the post-pandemic recovery still underway

August 26, 2022
  • Heli Brecailo
  • Sharu Thulasi
Local Market

The strong leasing activity that was witnessed to start the year has continued throughout the second quarter of 2022. Local retailers are optimistic about future sales for the remainder of the year, as they are seeing the continued result of pent-up demand.

Asking rents in Calgary have been increasing over the summer months and are expected to continue to rise as vacancy further declines in 2022. Due to the higher costs of construction caused by increasing interest rates, there will be a decrease in new product to the market contributing further to the upwards pressure on rents.

Net absorption will remain strong over the next few months. Positive net absorption generally also leads to a rise in rents.

This summer has been filled with a tremendous amount of activity fueled by the return of the Calgary Stampede, Folk Music Festival, and many other outdoor and ethnic festivities.

With back-to-school shopping in full effect, we are expecting parents to flock to bargain retailers like Winners and Dollarama.

Desire for experiential retail has been increasing across the nation, and retailers are realizing that consumers value experiences as much as they enjoy shopping.


Adult monthly passes and ridership have seen a significant increase each month.

The office situation in Calgary still is not what it was pre-pandemic, with many still working from home.

QSR has been the quickest to recover and has had the highest leasing demand. This has a lot to do with a low inventory of vacant spaces coupled with a supply of franchisee candidates looking to enter the business.

Calgary International Airport (YYC) has stayed busy over the past year as passenger statistics have increased for both domestic and international travelers.

The reopening of travel and entertainment have triggered a shift in consumer demand. Categories like home furnishing and improvements have been replaced with more social activities.

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