Hillside shopping centre’s $80-million transformation is unfolding as new businesses and new spaces open on staggered dates.
“It’s starting to really come together,” said Don Burton, executive vice-president of the retail group for Triovest Realty Advisors, which manages the mall for its owner, the Canada Pension Plan Investment Board.
As major components of the redevelopment of the shopping centre are being completed, some will be ready prior to the lucrative Christmas season while others such as Target and Marshalls, part of the U.S. retailing wave arriving in Canada, are opening in 2014.
“Through the summer, you’re going to have a bunch of new stores that are going to open up,” Burton said from Toronto on Friday.
Once completed, the entire centre, including Thrifty Foods and a new, two-storey Target, will measure 590,000 square feet, Burton said. All but 20,000 square feet has been leased and committed.
Milestones in the construction work are being unveiled next month.
A new wing of about 50,000 square feet and focusing on younger fashions on the property’s east side facing Shelbourne Street will be ready in August, he said. The area includes space underneath the parking deck and an extension.
New space will be turned over to tenants, expected to open in the fall, Burton said. Some businesses are new to the centre while others are relocating. Shops include Forever Flawless, a skin care store; clothing retailers Ardene and Hot Gossip and Claire’s fashion accessories.
Mall patrons will be able to park on the upper deck and ride an elevator to the new mall entrance — also opening next month — on the Shelbourne side of the site, he said.
Shoppers Drug Mart is relocating in early August to its new 16,500-square-foot location on the Shelbourne Street side; that’s almost doubling its current size.
The existing Shoppers Drug Mart space is expected to be taken over by a new B.C. Liquor Store, filling 8,400 square feet. Final negotiations are underway, Burton said.
Sport Chek and Atmosphere, featuring sports gear and clothing, will open in November. Sport Chek will be on two levels, with Atmosphere on the ground floor. Motorists will be able to reach Sport Chek from the upper parking lot.
Early in 2014, the Bank of Nova Scotia will be in new space.
The 147,000-square-foot Target store under construction in the former Zellers location will open in March. The 31,000-square-foot Marshalls is expected to launch in April.
Renovations are winding up in the expanded food court as operators begin opening this month, with more in the next four to six weeks. Some, such as Starbucks, were already tenants and will be in an improved space while others are newcomers to Hillside. These include Booster Juice, Subway and Edo Japan.
New washrooms are coming and the food court will have more than 600 seats once renovations are finished.
One tenant still to be found is a restaurant. “We have been talking to a few folks,” he said. “We would love to have a sit-down restaurant.
For a list of current and future stores, opening dates, and floor plans, go to hillsidecentre.com
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