A huge Tesla dealership and service centre is scheduled to open next year at the CF Lime Ridge shopping centre in Hamilton.
Andy Traynor, General Manager of the mall, confirmed construction has begun on the location and the mall is “going to be home to Tesla’s largest Canadian retail and service location.”
“It’s about 60,000 square feet. It is massive,” said Traynor. “We’ve been negotiating this deal with Tesla for over a year and we’re thrilled that they will be part of our assortment here at Lime Ridge.”
He said Tesla will open in the fall of 2024. It’s both a showroom and a service location. The showroom entrance will be within the mall. The service centre will be behind it with an entrance on the outside of the mall for customers to drop off their vehicles to have them serviced.
“Who would have thought you could buy a vehicle in a mall?,” said Traynor. “It works. Just the curiosity factor alone will draw traffic down that wing. So it will act as an anchor whether you can afford a Tesla or not. People want to go see the latest and greatest Elon Musk model and it attracts a lot of traffic.
“On the flip side, if you’re there to get your car serviced, what a perfect marriage to have the customer tied to the retail experience where they can run an errand, do some shopping, grab a bite to eat, go to the restaurant, go to the food court, grab a coffee, as opposed to sitting in a service centre where you’re in the middle of an industrial area.
“This really acts as a southwestern Ontario hub for Tesla where they will draw traffic from as far west as London, the Niagara area, possibly the west end of Toronto to come to Hamilton to get their car serviced and at the same time enjoy some great shopping here at Lime Ridge.”
The space used to be occupied by Home Outfitters and The Bay.
Lime Ridge, which opened in 1981, is about 790,000 square feet with about 175 stores. Occupancy is back to pre-pandemic levels of about 94-95 per cent.
The Tesla store in Hamilton will act as a true dealership and the mall has also allocated some parking stalls for its inventory.
“We do have some plans for densification (of the mall) once we get everything approved. Some very exciting plans for Lime Ridge,” said Traynor. More news to come on that.
“Other things, noting some of the biggest changes we’ve made recently, JD Sports opened up with a 7,100-square-foot location. Our Bath and Body Works has doubled in size with a complete new renovation with a White Barn (Candles) shop in shop. That’s doing extremely well.
“We opened up the first Mary Brown’s Chicken in any CF property. That’s done extremely well for us as an outward facing food unit that gives onto the main street. It’s an outside access only. And then we have Moda Cafe coming in. Moda Cafe is more of a Turkish cuisine. They’ve opened at Square One, Shops at Don Mills. They’re opening up next spring here at Lime Ridge. So we’ve got a lot of activity going on.”