May 08, 2019 | Gerald Vander Pyl
Highly anticipated Telus Sky serves as symbol of hope for battered downtown office marketAnyone in the downtown area on the evening of April 18 was treated to a light show, as coloured LEDs on the new Telus Sky building recreated the aurora borealis in a test of a new art installation.
Artist Douglas Coupland's Northern Lights is just one of the features of Telus Sky – a new skyscraper in Calgary's downtown skyline and a sign that tough times in the city won't last forever.
"The investment and commitment to build iconic and unique infrastructure of this magnitude is clearly a sign of confidence and belief in Calgary over the long term," said Marco De Iaco, executive director of the Calgary Downtown Association.
De Iaco says that while it could be a long road to a complete recovery, "the opening of Telus Sky is an exciting and impactful development that can be a significant beacon in the right direction."
The first tenants are scheduled to move into the building in late July, with a public opening to follow in early August, says Rhiannon Mabberley, project manager with Westbank, which developed the building in partnership with Telus and Allied Properties REIT.
"Leasing activity is certainly picking up and we feel really good about the future of Telus Sky and how it fits into the shifting Alberta economy." - Rhiannon Mabberley, Westbank
Mabberley says Telus will occupy the first seven floors of the structure, while two other anchor tenants have been secured, but not yet officially announced.
"Leasing activity is certainly picking up and we feel really good about the future of Telus Sky and how it fits into the shifting Alberta economy," she said.
Floors 30 to 58 will have rental suites that can be booked for stays of 30 days or longer, and Mabberley says the first guests are already booked for Sept. 1.
In addition to its creative exterior design by the architects of Bjarke Ingels Group, Telus Sky has many world-class features.
It will be a LEED platinum-certified building, meaning it uses 35 per cent less energy than a traditional building of its size. There will also be extensive green space on the main level and rooftop, and a nine-storey atrium "green wall."
"We're incredibly proud of what we built in Telus Sky," said Mabberley.
Topping it all off is Calgary's largest art installation, the shimmering lights that mark the building's north and south exposures.
"Different patterns of light will reflect on the facade of the building after dusk every evening," said Mabberley. "It's very beautiful."
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