Apr 01

How to Make Second Floor Space More Valuable?

How do you make walk-up second floor space more valuable (to both tenant and landlord), more visible and more usable?

-you give your second level space a ground floor, street-facing entrance

-you provide it with main street signage/sign band above the door

If you look at the above photo of Ottawa’s Elgin street, you will see that Live! is a 2nd floor venue with ground level entry.

It may not be a visitable space, but it’s certainly got a higher profile than most walk-up office space or 2nd floor retail space. 

In larger cities like Tokyo, they will put in feature stairs with access to much higher levels–you’ll  see retail spaces on 3rd, 4th, 5th, even 6th floors with street level entrances.

Here’s an example of an office building (the Royal Bank Pavilion) I built in the 1990s where 2nd floor offices in the wing of the structure (its left hand side) are made much more valuable by having their own entries at grade, their own feature stairs and their own skylights brightening up those stairways…

We also exploited our subterranean rights by having parking not only under this building but also extending out into the setbacks (all below grade). 

Moreover, this is being done today in residential development where rising land prices (in places like London England and Toronto Canada) have made it worthwhile to underpin buildings and go down and out with one, two or even three levels of underground (basement) space.

Note you can also make your basement space more like “retail” or ground floor space by adding walkouts–this is just as valuable in a commercial setting as a residential one, viz:

@ profbruce

Live! is a performance venue available for use by local theater, music, and
arts groups.

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About the Author

Bruce is an entrepreneur/real estate broker/developer/coach/urban guru/keynote speaker/Sens founder/novelist/columnist/peerless husband/dad.