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Planned mall to be enclosed

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The complex will feature stand-alone and strip-mall-style stores as well as an enclosed fashion outlet mall, a hotel, grocery store and residential buildings.

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The complex will feature stand-alone and strip-mall-style stores as well as an enclosed fashion outlet mall, a hotel, grocery store and residential buildings.

Shoppers won't have to brave the elements while shopping at a new $200-million fashion outlet mall that's planned for southwest Winnipeg.

Developers raised the curtain Tuesday on their plans for developing the 437.3-hectare parcel of land that makes up the second half of the IKEA-led Seasons of Tuxedo development. The centrepiece of the new 910,000-square-foot development, which will be called the Outlets of Seasons, will be an enclosed, 385,000-square-foot premier fashion outlet mall that is slated to open in the spring of 2017.

There will also be a hotel, a 40,000-square-foot grocery store, a number of stand-alone stores and strip-mall-style retail complexes, and an undisclosed number of apartments and condominiums.

Two Regina-based firms -- Harvard Developments Inc. and Forster Projects Inc. -- are developing the Outlets of Seasons complex.

And a seasoned Canadian fashion-outlet-centre developer -- Ivanhoé Cambridge -- will develop and manage the outlet centre, which will be called Outlet Collection at Winnipeg.

Harvard and Forster acquired the parcel of land on the northwest corner of Kenaston Boulevard and Sterling Lyon Parkway earlier this year from a joint venture company owned by IKEA and Winnipeg's Fairweather Properties, who are developing the south half of the 1.8-million-square-foot Seasons of Tuxedo mixed-use development.

The purchase price has not been disclosed.

The south half of the development includes a 400,000-square-foot IKEA store, a 70,000-square-foot Cabela's store and a number of smaller retail outlets, restaurants and financial institutions.

Blair Forster, Harvard's vice-president of development and president of Forster Projects, said Harvard had been looking at the Winnipeg market for a number of years, and the Seasons of Tuxedo site was just too good to pass up.

"We think it's one of the best (development) opportunities in Western Canada," he told real estate industry representatives attending the third biennial Winnipeg Real Estate Forum Tuesday in Winnipeg.

Forster said in a later interview Fairweather and IKEA had looked at building a retail complex with a retractable roof on the north-side property. And Harvard and Forster's original design plans called for a fashion outlet mall that had the stores opening onto a central, open-air concourse.

But when Ivanhoé Cambridge approached them about getting involved in the project, it suggested an enclosed mall similar to a typical regional shopping centre.

"And we agreed... that with the cold-weather climate, having an enclosed shopping centre would extend the shopping season," Forster added.

The developers say the outlet centre will boast more than 90 stores featuring leading and brand-name fashion items at 25 to 75 per cent off regular retail prices.

Forster wouldn't disclose the names of any likely tenants for the centre, but he said they will be many of the same retailers found in most other premium fashion outlet centres in Canada and the United States.

He said they're already in talks with a developer who is interested in building a hotel on the site. He wouldn't say how big the hotel is likely to be, but said it will have all the amenities that would appeal to families, including a swimming pool.

"They're going to try and capitalize on the draw of both the IKEA store and the fashion outlet centre for extended stays," he said, adding the outlet centre is expected to draw shoppers from as far afield as eastern Saskatchewan, northern Manitoba, northwestern Ontario and the north-central United States.

He said construction of some of the site's interior roads should begin within the next month or so, and the first building will likely begin to rise next spring. It could be the grocery store, the hotel, or the first phase of residential units.

He said a number of local developers have already purchased the residential land and are preparing their development plans. He said it's too soon to say how many residential units are likely to be built.

murray.mcneill@freepress.mb.ca

Republished from the Winnipeg Free Press print edition April 30, 2014 B5

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