Ambitious ICE District Development Aims to Transform Downtown Edmonton

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Downtown Edmonton is seeing a groundbreaking transformation with the development of ICE District, being developed by ICE District Joint Venture — a partnership between Katz Group and ONE Properties

When completed, the 25+ acre ICE District will feature a world-class retail component that will be joined by towers housing offices, luxury residences, a prestigious hotel, casino, as well as recreation offerings anchored by the massive Rogers Place entertainment facility — home to the NHL’s Edmonton Oilers.

Centred around a large Public Plaza that will become a regional destination, ICE District will become Canada’s largest mixed-use sports and entertainment district, with an anticipated 10 million annual visitors.

Spectacular new towers within ICE District will transform the Edmonton skyline. Towers will include residential components above offices and hotels, while the ground levels will include retail, restaurants and lobbies for the towers above. 

The project will be interconnected through public pedways and ground level walkways with Rogers Place anchoring its North end, and a massive parkade beneath. Its retail component will cater to both locals and visitors alike, and will be opened in two phases.

The first phase of retail offerings, scheduled to open in 2018, will feature 85,000 square feet of retail space. Retail will include a variety of uses, including multiple restaurant options, boasting exceptional exposure to the new Public Plaza as well as adjacent busy streets. A flagship Rexall drugstore will be part of the mix. Much of the new retail in the first phase will be located within Stantec Tower, which will become the tallest building in Western Canada when completed and the location of Edmonton’s highest restaurant.

Located on the second level of the 2-storey retail podium will be a 700 seat, 28,000 square foot Food Hall with 14 unique food vendors. The Food Hall will be open for breakfast, lunch, dinner, and even late into the evening. Food Hall patrons will have the option of dining in a sun-filled atrium, or outdoors in the second-floor terrace overlooking the bustling Public Plaza. Above the expansive retail space will be 28 floors of office space, and above those, 38 floors of residential with 481 luxury condominium units.

An adjacent luxury JW Marriott Hotel will add 346 rooms and above the hotel will be 249 luxury condominium units, in the prestigious new The Legends Private Residences.  
ICE District’s 50,000 square foot Public Plaza will also open to the public next year, featuring year-round events for all ages, ranging from concerts to festivals to holiday skating. The adjacent 103 Street, now privately-owned, provides an opportunity to expand the public realm through temporary closures.

A second phase, featuring 170,000 square feet of retail space over three floors, will open in 2019. Included will be a national grocery store anchor and a 35,000 square foot Cineplex UltraAVX and VIP Cinemas, downtown Edmonton’s first premium movie theatre that will attract as many as 300,000 moviegoers per year. Another residential tower with an estimated 550 units will be located above the new retail podium. 
ICE District boasts an incredible amount of entertainment offerings. Rogers Place, Edmonton’s newest and most advanced sports and entertainment venue, can house between 18,500 and 20,000 fans for events that range from NHL Edmonton Oilers games to some of the world’s best live acts. Ford Hall, a 24,000 square foot grand atrium entrance of Rogers Place, is a gathering place for Rogers Place visitors and will play host to signature events.

The adjacent $32-million Grand Villa Casino features 60,000 square feet of world-class gaming, dining and live entertainment. 

There’s also the recently opened Edmonton Downtown Community Arena, a public skating rink, which adds animation to the increasingly vibrant area.

Given the entertainment focus and expected crowds, food and beverage will be key to ICE District’s retail offerings. More than 12 full-service on-site restaurants will serve an assortment of international fare, ranging from intimate cafés to full service restaurants. 

Downtown Edmonton will see thousands of more people both during the daytime as well as in the evenings. An estimated 7,200 office tower workers will join about 1,000 hospitality workers and 600 hotel workers within ICE District alone, with a nearby daytime population estimated to be 75,000 people. 

With over 1,300 multi-family residential units planned, ICE District will become home to over 1,950 residents in its first three towers.

ICE District benefits from exceptional access, which will only become better with time. Edmonton’s 13 kilometre network of indoor walkways connecting more than 40 buildings, provides the downtown workforce with easy, year-round access to ICE District and its retail tenants.

ICE District is also near multiple bus routes as well as the new MacEwan Light Rail Transit (LRT) Station that is connected directly to Rogers Place and the pedway system. Four other LRT stations are located within a five minute walk and once the Valley Line LRT is completed in 2020, another stop will open nearby, making ICE District an easy access point for a ridership that is expected to exceed 100,000 people daily.

When completed, ICE District will also boast an estimated 3,000 parking stalls in its underground parkades, with a further 6,000 stalls within a five minute walk, and 13,500 stalls within a 10 minute walk of ICE District. Parking will be key to the area, which sees an estimated 86,000 vehicles daily pass by on busy 104 Avenue and 101 Street.

ICE District is transforming downtown Edmonton, creating excitement in a development unlike anything the city has seen. Day-to-night, thousands of people will increasingly be frequenting the area, creating opportunities for retailers and restaurants seeking to be part of one of Canada’s greatest urban renewal projects. For retailers that are interested in locating in the area, contact: 

Robert Mulvale, Vice President – Leasing
ONE Properties
P: 647.256.1017

Lora Sloan, Leasing Manager
ONE Properties
P: 647.256.1021

Hilary Lumme, Vice President, Property Management, Operations, Leasing
Katz Group Real Estate Inc.
P: 780.229.1654


ICE District Location, and Phasing Maps (PDF) 

ICE District Lease Plans (PDF) 

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Article Author

Craig Patterson
Craig Patterson
Located in Toronto, Craig is the Publisher & CEO of Retail Insider Media Ltd. He is also a retail analyst and consultant, Advisor at the University of Alberta School Centre for Cities and Communities in Edmonton, former lawyer and a public speaker. He has studied the Canadian retail landscape for over 25 years and he holds Bachelor of Commerce and Bachelor of Laws Degrees.

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