- Stephen Lecce, MPP
Ontario Names Newmark as Site Selector for Canada's First Job Site Challenge
February 08, 2021
The Ontario government has recruited an internationally recognized commercial real estate and corporate site selection firm, Newmark, to support the delivery of Canada's first Job Site Challenge. The Job Site Challenge is Canada's first mega site program, modelled after successful mega site programs in many U.S. states that were designed to attract large-scale investments in automotive and advanced manufacturing. Municipalities, economic development agencies and industrial property owners put forward large tracts of industrial lands of 500 to 1,500 acres that could support large-scale manufacturing operations. The challenge has received 19 applications from across the province. Newmark was selected for the Job Site Challenge because of the company's knowledge and expertise in corporate location strategy, foreign direct investment, global footprint realignment, and providing comprehensive real estate services and consulting tailored to the industrial and advanced manufacturing life cycle. Notable past clients include global companies in the automotive, aerospace, life science, semiconductor, consumer products and other advanced manufacturing sectors. Leading the Newmark team for the Job Site Challenge is Gregg Wassmansdorf, Senior Managing Director with Newmark's global consulting practice. He is the first, and only, Canadian member of the world's top association for site selection professionals, the Site Selectors Guild, and an executive member of its board of directors. "A mega site brings new opportunities for long-term investment that can create thousands of good-paying direct and indirect jobs throughout the industrial supply chain to benefit communities across the whole province," said Vic Fedeli, Minister of Economic Development, Job Creation and Trade. "Now more than ever, the challenge acts as an important investment-attraction initiative for Ontario's economic recovery and for restarting the province's economic engine." The Job Site Challenge strengthens Ontario's economic competitiveness as the province competes for major manufacturing investments. The program will equip the province with an inventory of shovel-ready mega sites to support economic recovery. "Hiring a site selector is an important next step for the Job Site Challenge," said Prabmeet Sarkaria, Associate Minister of Small Business and Red Tape Reduction. "Gregg and the Newmark team have a solid track record for choosing the right communities and sites to meet the needs of major companies." The Job Site Challenge also builds on the success of the province's existing Investment Ready: Certified Site Program, which pre-qualifies smaller industrial properties across the province.
The Job Site Challenge is part of Driving Prosperity: The Future of Ontario’s Automotive Sector, the government’s plan to strengthen the auto sector’s competitiveness.
The Job Site Challenge started accepting proposals on January 1, 2020. The submission deadline was originally March 31, 2020, but due to the global pandemic was extended to July 31, 2020.
Ontario is the only place in North America where five major automakers build vehicles — Fiat Chrysler, Ford, General Motors, Honda and Toyota — as well as truck manufacturer Hino.
Ontario is also an ideal destination for advanced manufacturing sectors such as aerospace, medical devices, pharmaceuticals, agri-food and information technology manufacturing.
Ontario’s new investment attraction agency, Invest Ontario, was established as part of the COVID-19 Economic Recovery Act, 2020. Its mandate is to pursue investments that create jobs and new revenue streams for Ontario, with an initial focus on the advanced manufacturing, technology and life science sectors.
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