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West Edmonton Mall Announces Massive Automotive Experience Initiative with Valet Parking [Exclusive]

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West Edmonton Mall has announced a partnership with Mayfield Toyota that will transform part of a wing in the shopping centre.

Included will be a massive automotive experience centre unlike anything seen in Canada, along with car detailing and other services as well as valet parking for the mall for the first time. Spanning 317,000 square feet, the initiative is also said to be an endeavour to attract more big-brand retailers to North America’s largest shopping centre which has already secured Louis Vuitton and Tiffany & Co. with other tenants to be announced as leases are signed.

Construction on the project will begin in March 2020, with completion expected for the spring of 2021.

Mayfield Toyota, which is relocating to West Edmonton Mall from its current location about 1.6 km north of the shopping centre, will open a 117,000 square foot automotive centre on the main level of West Edmonton Mall’s Phase One. The Mayfield Toyota Dealership Experience will occupy space vacated last year by a Sears store as well as several adjacent retail spaces along with common-area space in front of the former mall-facing Sears entrance. We recently reported that The Brick had opened a flagship furniture store on the second level of the former Sears space, directly above what will become the Mayfield Toyota Dealership Experience.

RENDERING: SUPPLIED

The state-of-the-art interactive automotive space will house 65 servicing bays as well as expansive display areas for new Toyota models.

In addition, a new 200,000 square foot multi-level parking structure and service detail centre will be built on the northeast corner of the West Edmonton Mall site facing both 170 Street and 90 Avenue. The service centre will house a car detailing centre, and shoppers utilizing the new valet parking may choose to utilize the service. Included will be full detailing packages, express oil changes, complete mechanical services, over-the counter parts purchases, tire sales/swaps and storage, windshields and other services.

It will become yet another draw to West Edmonton Mall, which sees 30.8 million visitors annually, according to its website.

CLICK IMAGE FOR INTERACTIVE WEST EDMONTON MALL MAP

“Time is a limited commodity in today’s world and the scope of this build will allow our guests to accomplish so much more with just one convenient stop,” said David Friesen, General Manager and Managing Partner at Mayfield Toyota.

David Ghermezian, President of West Edmonton Mall Property Inc., said, “West Edmonton Mall is excited to partner with Mayfield Toyota in the development of a unique customer focused Dealer Experience at a scale which has never been seen in a shopping centre before.”

The new automotive centre and services including detailing and valet parking will no doubt help propel West Edmonton Mall’s image in the mind of shoppers as well as retailers looking to open in the centre.

Edmonton is home to affluent residents and is also expected to attract more monied tourists as the West Edmonton Mall adds new luxury retailers to the mix. Over the summer, Louis Vuitton opened a 4,500 square foot store in the mall’s up-and-coming second level ‘luxury run’, which already houses locations for brands including Tiffany & Co., Coach, Marc Cain and Rolex. Canada Goose also opened a store over the summer nearby and is often busy with shoppers who are also making big-ticket purchases. Landlord Triple Five confirms that it is in talks with other luxury brands with one big-name Italian brand having recently leased space near Louis Vuitton, and talks are ongoing to secure other luxury brands similar to what one might find at Toronto’s Yorkdale Shopping Centre.

PHOTO: LOUIS VUITTON WEST EDMONTON MALL

Canadian department store chain Holt Renfrew will be closing its downtown Edmonton store in January of 2020. West Edmonton Mall’s leasing team is said to be targeting brands currently within Holt Renfrew to open standalone units at West Edmonton Mall to continue to serve visitors to the centre.

The addition of luxury brands to West Edmonton Mall will create a draw for international tourists who are already looking at visiting immersive experiences such as those provided at West Edmonton Mall. More than 30% of visitors to the centre are out-of-town tourists, and the centre is targeting international visitors from countries such as China who are known to spend big dollars on big-name brands.

The Mayfield Toyota partnership is an extension of an existing one where Mayfield Toyota acquired the naming rights to West Edmonton Mall’s indoor ice rink in 2012, which is currently named the ‘Mayfield Toyota Ice Palace’. Mayfield Toyota has sold vehicles on the Ice Palace with tremendous success. “We’ve seen firsthand how our customers have embraced Mayfield Toyota at West Edmonton Mall through the last five years with many successful sale events at the Mayfield Toyota Ice Palace,” Mr. Ghermezian said. “This innovative partnership supports our customer’s lifestyles by providing a level of service and convenience that is unparalleled in the industry.We’re excited to be at the forefront of this groundbreaking automotive experience.”

INSIDE CANADA GOOSE AT WEST EDMONTON MALL. PHOTO: CANADA GOOSE

Mayfield Toyota has operated its large facility at 102 Avenue and 170 Street since 1998 and has become the largest volume Toyota dealer in Western Canada. A larger facility is required to sustain future growth, according to the retailer.

West Edmonton Mall has seen an increase in foot traffic with the addition of new retailers at a wide range of price points, and landlord Triple Five continues to target new brands and concepts to draw customers from the Edmonton market and beyond. The mall’s leasing team has been reaching out to international brands in an attempt to have them open in the centre, including some names currently not in the Canadian market. Already, the ‘main run’ in the shopping centre is said to see annual sales per square foot exceeding $1,200, and brands are taking notice.

Japanese retailer Uniqlo recently opened at West Edmonton Mall to long lineups, and the centre is in discussions with various brokers and retail concepts to open in the centre which includes an assortment of retailers as well as restaurants and bars, entertainment centres and other attractions.

Article Author

Craig Patterson
Located in Toronto, Craig is the Editor-in-Chief of Retail Insider and President/CEO of Retail Insider Media Ltd. He is also a retail analyst and consultant, Director of Applied Research at the University of Alberta School of Retailing in Edmonton, and consultant to the Retail Council of Canada. 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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