Economic Development Annual Report

Annual updates on the year’s economic activity, competitive positioning and departmental initiatives.

2023 Economic Development Annual Report

The 2023 Economic Development Annual Report was presented to Council on June 24, 2024 and highlighted local economic growth, recovery and resiliency. 

For the fifth year in a row, Oakville was named one of the best locations to invest in Canada by Site Selection Magazine.

Read The 2023 Economic Development Annual Report

Competitive positioning

When compared to 17 surrounding municipalities, Oakville’s commercial market remains highly competitive. 

Business activity

Oakville remains focused on attracting new investment, responding to the needs of local businesses, and supporting the town’s commercial districts. Investments in facility expansions and innovation resulted in job creation and economic growth.

New company arrivals

The town welcomed several new companies across various industries, including: 

  • Buchanan Rubber,
  • Collins Sales,
  • ProServeIT, and 
  • Snuggle Bugz.

Company expansions and investments

Oakville also saw significant expansions, investments, and announcements from existing businesses, including: 

  • Ford, 
  • Dana Canada Corporation, 
  • Olymel, 
  • BioScript Pharmacy Solutions, and 
  • PCL Construction.

Non-residential permit activity

Commercial permit activity

Oakville saw $64.3 million in commercial construction value, and around 560,000 sq. ft. of commercial development approved.

Industrial permit activity

Industrial development permit activity increased significantly in 2023, seeing over two million square feet of development and $175.6 million in construction value approved.

The five major industrial development projects in 2023 consisted mostly of major business parks concentrated on the west end of Oakville (Ward 1).

Industrial permit activity in 2023

Source: Town of Oakville, 2023.

Real estate market

Office real estate

Oakville’s office vacancy rate decreased from 19.6% in 2022 to 17.5% in 2023, the lowest it has been since 2019.

Source: CBRE Marketview Snapshot, Oakville Office Q4 2023.

Industrial real estate

With the construction of five major industrial developments in the year, Oakville’s industrial vacancy rate increased in 2023, from a record low of 0.3% in 2022 to 3.1% in 2023. This alleviated some demand for space from the previous year.

Source: CBRE Marketview Snapshot, Oakville Industrial Q4 2023.

Key 2023 initiatives

Film office

Despite six months of filming being disrupted due to Writers Guild and Actors Guild strikes, the Film Office received 66 film requests and coordinated 45 film days in 2023, with a total of 28 productions being shot in Oakville.

Learn more about filming in Oakville.

Seasonal commercial patio program

In 2023, the town consulted with the community on the development of the patio program and launched the permanent, annual program in 2024.

Learn more about the patio program in Oakville.

Digital Main Street program

The town supported 100 new clients throughout the year as part of the Digital Main Street program, helping local businesses adopt online technologies. Since the start of the program in 2019, over 625 clients have been served. 

In early 2024, the department worked with the Mayor’s office to advocate for the continuation of the program. Despite this, the DMS program in Ontario did not receive renewed funding and the final day of the program was March 31, 2024.

Planning for the future

Economic Development Plan 2024-2029

In 2023, the town began working on a new five-year Economic Development Plan for 2024-2029 in consultation with the business community and other key stakeholders. The plan will be finalized in 2024. 

Visit our Economic Development Plan page to learn more.

Looking to the future

In 2024, the Economic Development team will continue to support the growth and diversification of the Oakville economy. 

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