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Revolutionizing Real Estate: Douglas Hayden on Modular Construction for Optimal Sustainability

July 21, 20233 min read

Revolutionizing Real Estate: Douglas Hayden on Modular Construction for Optimal Sustainability

Douglas Hayden is a renowned figure in the real estate and construction industries, with over 25 years of experience in commercial and residential development. A true Calgarian at heart, Douglas has honed his skills working with multiple tech startups and gaining invaluable insights that have contributed to his forward-thinking approach. Recently, he has ventured into the world of modular and prefabricated construction, aiming to revolutionize the industry through sustainable and efficient building practices. Douglas's extensive experiences in various cities across North America have helped him shape his innovative perspective on transforming the landscape of real estate.

This is Douglas Hayden's story:

Born and raised in Calgary, Douglas Hayden has always had a passion for innovation and technology. His journey began with studying television, petroleum technology, and business, and eventually led him to work in data centers and business development for tech startups. As he navigated through various industries, he was captivated by the concept of modular construction during his time working with prefabricated office interior build-outs. This curiosity eventually led him to explore the potential of applying these techniques to residential construction. Today, Douglas is a visionary in the world of sustainable and efficient living, advocating for the use of modular and prefabricated construction to create more environmentally-friendly, affordable, and adaptable housing solutions.

In this episode, you will:

  • Delve into the exciting world of prefab solutions for transforming commercial properties into residential havens.

  • Comprehend the ripple effect caused by COVID-19 on commercial real estate dynamics.

  • Appreciate the viability and benefits of utilizing modular and prefab construction in fostering sustainable growth.

  • Acknowledge the relevance of Environmental, Social, and Governance elements in shaping real estate choices.

  • Receive actionable recommendations and resources for entrepreneurs embarking on their startup adventure in Calgary.


Converting 30% Occupied Buildings

 The excess of office space in commercial buildings has affected building owners negatively. For instance, many buildings are occupied at a mere 30% capacity, leading to severe income shortfalls for their owners. In this context, it becomes essential to find innovative ways to utilize this space better, making it work for both building owners and prospective tenants. Douglas Hayden offers a solution by advocating the conversion of underutilized office spaces into residential and mixed-use spaces using modular and prefabricated technologies. This helps building owners retain or even increase their revenues by tapping into the needs of a different market, thereby improving the situation for all stakeholders, including local communities.

ESG Targets

 Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG) targets are becoming increasingly important for businesses in multiple sectors, including real estate. Organizations are focusing on how their operations impact the environment, society, and overall governance structures to make a difference in the world. In line with ESG targets, Douglas Hayden's Arthur Toe (Arthroto) startup aims to promote environmentally friendly and sustainable construction practices. By converting unused office spaces into modular and prefabricated homes, his company aligns with municipal philosophies on ESG and helps to support responsible growth in the industry.

The resources mentioned in this episode are:

Consider working for a couple of little startups to learn from them before starting your own venture.

Take advantage of the available incubators and programs in Calgary to help start your business.

Visit to learn more about their prefabricated solutions for converting unused office space to residential and mixed-use.

Check out the highest education designation in commercial real estate, CCIM.

Stay informed on the state of commercial real estate and its impact on downtown areas.

Learn more about the technology and advancements in modular and prefabricated building solutions.

Keep an eye on the real estate market and consider investing in multifamily or mixed-use properties.

Support local businesses and help revitalize downtown areas by patronizing their establishments.

Share this podcast episode with others to spread awareness and knowledge about the current state of commercial real estate and the solutions available.


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