Engineering Consulting Firm BGC Secured as Lead Tenant for 16-Storey Building C$ unless otherwise stated TSX/NYSE/PSE: MFC SEHK:945 VANCOUVER, July 25, 2013 /PRNewswire/ - Manulife Real Estate, the global real estate arm of Manulife Financial Corporation, today announced that it has begun construction on 980 Howe Street, a 16-storey, 250,000 square foot office building in downtown Vancouver. International engineering consulting firm BGC has been secured as lead tenant. Designed by CEI Architecture and Endall Elliot Associates, 980 Howe Street will be a state-of-the-art, Class "A", LEED Gold Certified office building located within walking distance of Robson Square, the Vancouver Art Gallery and the provincial law courts. The Vancouver office of Pivotal Projects is managing the project with Ellis Don as General Contractor. The building has a targeted completion of spring 2015. This development brings Manulife Real Estate's total owned and managed portfolio in Vancouver to more than 1 million square feet. Manulife's other Vancouver properties include 1095 West Pender and 510 Burrard Street. "Manulife Real Estate continues to expand our reach into the growing Vancouver real estate market," said Kevin Adolphe, President and CEO, Manulife Real Estate. "We have confidence in the fundamentals of the Vancouver office market and we have had tremendous experiences working with the Vancouver community." Amenities at 980 Howe Street will include an on-site conference facility; rooftop garden terrace; secure bicycle storage; an exclusive tenant lounge and a fitness centre. BGC, which provides engineering and geoscience services to the mining, energy and transportation industries has agreed to a 15-year lease term and will occupy four floors at 980 Howe.