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Quicken Loans said Monday that it plans to open a new location in downtown Windsor.

The Canada expansion to the Old Fish Market Building at 156 Chatham St. W. would allow the Detroit-based mortgage lender to boost its recruiting efforts from Ontario, as it grows its need for technology support and talent.

Windsor Mayor Drew Dilkens said an element of the move came following the work of his city and Detroit's efforts, led by Quicken Loans founder Dan Gilbert, to attract Amazon.com's second headquarters to the area.

"We talked about the benefits of one campus, two countries," Dilkens said. "When we weren't shortlisted, we were disappointed, but we refocused and knew that the business case is so strong that we're going to do something big."

In a press release, Quicken Loans CEO Jay Farner said pitching the international border to various companies educated the company on Ontario's technology talent pool.

Quicken is leasing more than 9,000 square feet of first-floor office space for more than 100 software, technology, engineering and programming workers in the building across the Detroit River. Renovations are expected to be completed in the first or second quarter of 2019.

Terms of the lease agreement were not made available, though Mark Lalovich, the broker with Windsor's Re/Max Preferred Realty that worked with Quicken Loans to find the location, said the price range for space of that caliber is $25-$30 per square foot.

"There's not a lot of class-A caliber buildings in the area," Lalovich said. "The building is completely being restored. It'll be one of our nicest heritage buildings in the downtown."

This is the second foray into Canada for the top home mortgage lender in the United States. In 2016, Quicken parent Rock Holdings' subsidiary Rocket Homes purchased Toronto-based OpenHouse Realty, a company specializing in the development of proprietary home and real estate agent search technology.

Quicken Loans currently does not offer mortgages in the Canadian market, though the press release says it is interested in learning about the Canadian home mortgage market.

bnoble@detroitnews.com

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