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Canada’s residential towers lead the return to pre-COVID traffic norms

We conducted Canada’s largest survey of residential and office tower elevator foot traffic. It shows a return to pre-COVID levels.

June 23, 2020

Vertical Impression has released Canada’s most comprehensive survey of residential and commercial office tower elevator traffic, using data collected from their network of ai-powered elevator smart-screens. Findings show that residential tower elevator traffic is nearing pre-COVID levels. Office tower traffic across the country remains at 25% of normal. Of the 4 cities surveyed (Toronto, Vancouver, Calgary, Edmonton), Toronto lags the farthest behind the rest of the country in return normalcy. 

“While COVID-19 restrictions remain in place across the country, many Canadians are clearly taking advantage of the summer to leave their buildings and explore their cities,” said Nicolette Leonardis, Vice President and Co-founder.  “Advertisers looking to connect with urban-based Canadians are now in a great position to take advantage of this return to regular traffic levels. Many organizations are seeing the value in being the first in their market to return their advertising and marketing operations to normal.”


Major Findings:

  • Residential traffic is at 91% pre-COVID levels in Calgary and Edmonton. 80-78% in Vancouver and Toronto.
  • Commercial traffic throughout the country remains at 20-25% of historical levels. Office buildings are largely empty.
  • Residential traffic shows consistent growth across Canada, even on weekends.
  • Motivating factors behind the rise in traffic include relaxing restrictions, good weather, and the opening of bars and restaurants in many cities.
Residential traffic is near normal levels.

Commercial Traffic remains at 25% of normal

Data was gathered from Vertical Impression’s cross-Canada network of ai-powered smart screens. Over 13 million data points were gathered from residential and commercial buildings and analyzed by the company’s data analysis and growth team. Each screen gathers anonymous traffic data in each building elevator to help advertisers understand their true audience reach, as well as help the building managers understand elevator use amounts.

“It’s all about delivering a smarter, more pleasing service to building managers and elevator riders,” said Fouad El-Masri, CEO and Co-founder. “By providing traffic data to our building partners and advertisers, we can be much more transparent about the volume of people travelling through the buildings. It’s all about providing the tools to make better decisions.”

For questions, interviews, and more information about Vertical Impression’s dataset and graphics, please contact Andrew Williams at

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