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Keltic closes multimillion-dollar Burnaby land deal

$100 million transaction includes an entire city block at Willingdon and Kingsway
Bosa had planned a two-tower mixed-use project on the Metrotown site, with one tower at 70 storeys, prior to sale of the site to Keltic Canada Development | Photo: Bosa Properties

Vancouver real estate agent Goran Bucan brokered two of Metro Vancouver’s biggest real estate deals this year, including the nine-figure sale of an entire city block in Burnaby’s Metrotown that closed at the end of November. 

The 1.8-acre site was bought for “in excess of $100 million” under a share-sale agreement, according to Rachel Li Lei, CEO of Keltic Canada Development, which bought the property. 

The sale of 4444 and 4488 Kingsway includes an Esso gas station and a smaller adjacent lot, both of which had previously been purchased by Bosa Properties. Bosa acquired the Esso gas station from 7-Eleven Canada in 2018 for $24 million. 

Plans for the 80,000-square -foot site include a one-million-square-foot residential and commercial development, which will now proceed under Keltic Canada. 

Bucan said the deal is linked to the earlier sale of Bristol Estates in Central Surrey, a 6.5-acre parcel bought by Bosa Properties in July for $170 million and approved for approximately two million square feet of residential and commercial construction in five towers. 

Bucan facilitated the off-market deal during a five-hour meeting between Bosa and the vendor, Landmark Premiere Properties Ltd., which had spent four years getting the site rezoning and permits in place, the agent said. 

In return, Bosa provided Bucan with the opportunity to sell its 1.8-acre Burnaby site, on which Bosa had spent seven years of land assembly and planning. 

“Bosa gave me 30 days to sell it, with an unconditional offer,” Bucan recalled. 

He immediately pitched the site to Keltic and two out-ofprovince developers. Less than a week later, Keltic accepted the offer and the sale closed at midnight on Nov. 30. 

Bosa’s plan for the property, at the corner of Kingsway Avenue and Willingdon Street in the Metrotown area of Burnaby, included two towers, with one potentially as high as 70 storeys, covering approximately one million square feet with 553 condos, 385 rental housing units, a 160-room hotel and commercial square footage. The maximum allowable density is 14.3 floorspace ratio. 

According to Lei, Keltic may change the configuration to replace the hotel with more office and other commercial space, including a small grocery outlet and upscale restaurants. 

Bucan, of Sutton Group Vancouver, also brokered the single largest commercial transaction in Metro Vancouver in 2021. It involved the sale of a 27-acre property in Richmond to Keltic for $300 million. •