Developers from southern Ontario and Western Canada are increasingly asking about property in the city, a Thunder Bay landowner says.
Ahsanul Habib said he's had several inquiries from non-local developers, within the past year. Some of those buildings hadn't generated any interest in the past eight years, but he credited the city's strong housing market for bringing more interest from outside companies.
Habib said he sees the interest as a sign the city is becoming more attractive to outside bidders.
"I think it's good to have other people, other ideas, so I think it benefits everybody," he said. "These people don't just come with money, right? They come with ideas and unique ways to do things."
Michael Kuipers is a Toronto-based developer who is doing just that.
His company is working to transform the old Kilroy's Bar on Cumberland Street into storefronts and loft-style condominiums.
"I think Thunder Bay, as a whole, has been undervalued specifically from a housing perspective," Kuipers said.
"With the economic fundementals that are happening there, there's a … big opportunity for continued growth."
The re-development of the north-side waterfront also played a role in his decision to purchase the property, Kuipers added.
Habib said none of the interest in his properties has led to actual sales.