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Promenade Shopping Centre in Thornhill to be Redeveloped into Vibrant Urban Centre [Renderings/Exclusive Interview]

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The Promenade Shopping Centre, north of Toronto in the heart of Thornhill, will be the centrepiece of a multi-phase development as part of an emerging vibrant urban centre.

Residents will be able to find all their needs at Promenade Shopping Centre including two grocery stores, an LCBO, a health club, a drug store and more. The vision is that the Shopping Centre will provide all the amenities for the residents and workers of the new residential and office towers as well as the surrounding Thornhill community and beyond.

The first two condominium towers are currently under construction with occupancy expected in 2024. With direct access to the existing shopping centre, these 35 and 30-storey towers contain more than 750 residential condominiums and approximately 80,000 square feet of new retail space.

Molly Westbrook

“This type of transformational, mixed-use development is a perfect example of how visionary investors and retailers are reimagining large-format mall and shopping centre sites in the GTA and across Canada. It’s also emblematic of a trend we’re seeing across cities in Canada and the USA as well,” said Molly Westbrook, Executive Managing Director, Cushman & Wakefield Asset Services.

“Retail redevelopment and the addition of high-end, vertical residential and office components can build on traditional malls’ and shopping centres’ history as both business and social hubs, reinvigorating, adding density and creating more vibrant neighborhoods and complete communities.”

The approximately 540,000 square-foot Promenade, sits on more than 50 acres of land at Bathurst and Centre streets, near Highway 407.

Promenade Shopping Centre (Concept rendering – subject to change)

Promenade Shopping Centre opened in 1986 and underwent a $45-million upgrade in 2009, that included the redevelopment of the food court and common areas. Promenade Limited Partnership, a partnership between Serruya Private Equity and a Liberty Development managed corporation, purchased the Promenade Shopping Centre in 2017.

Liberty Development Corporation is a full-service real estate development company. It is a leading development manager of commercial, office, and residential buildings in the Greater Toronto Area. The principals of Liberty have over 40 years of hands-on experience in the development and construction industries.

Serruya Private Equity is a global private equity firm focused on transforming companies by collaborating with management to develop and implement strategies which leverage SPE’s existing operational and financial resources. SPE invests capital in a broad range of asset classes with an emphasis on franchising, retail, and real estate. SPE’s real estate portfolio is currently comprised of ownership interests in more than 50 properties; a collection of office, retail, residential and industrial assets, located in Canada and the U.S., with a combined gross leasable area of over two million square feet.

Promenade is under new management with Cushman & Wakefield Asset Services, a leading global real estate services firm.

Image: Promenade Mall

The City of Vaughan’s Promenade Centre Secondary plan said the area around the shopping centre, known as the Promenade Centre, will be home to many, a place to shop, gather and grow.

“As Vaughan’s population continues to grow, there is a need for housing and transportation options, business and retail enhancements to accommodate people who want to live in a city that has the best to offer,” it says.

“The City is undertaking a secondary plan study for the Promenade Centre that will establish a vision, key principles and a complete land-use plan to guide the community’s future evolution and development. The study will include an extensive transportation review to help move people through Promenade Centre by all modes of travel – walking, cycling, transit and driving. It will also determine the plan for achieving a complete community featuring a mix of uses and attractive, functional and pedestrian-friendly spaces.

“Promenade Centre is identified as a place for growth and will evolve over time as a distinct urban centre. Promenade Centre will maintain and enhance its role as an important place for people to gather, socialize, shop, work, learn and live. The Centre will be planned for pedestrians, cyclists, transit users and motorists, providing a network of complete streets and ease of access to high quality local and rapid transit services. These streets, in concert with a network of parks, indoor and outdoor open spaces and gathering places, will be vibrant, safe and accessible for the needs of a multi-generational community. New development within Promenade Centre will be sustainable and provide for a mix of retail, entertainment, community and office uses, as well as a variety of housing types. The evolution of Promenade Centre will respect the surrounding neighbourhoods.”

Mario Toneguzzi
Mario Toneguzzi
Mario Toneguzzi, based in Calgary, has more than 40 years experience as a daily newspaper writer, columnist, and editor. He worked for 35 years at the Calgary Herald covering sports, crime, politics, health, faith, city and breaking news, and business. He is the Senior News Editor with Retail Insider in addition to working as a freelance writer and consultant in communications and media relations/training.

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