Hey there, time traveller!
This article was published 9/8/2018 (1168 days ago), so information in it may no longer be current.
Redevelopment of the former Target store north of Polo Park is nearing completion with the 24-7 Intouch call centre scheduled to move in any day.
It will mark what is hoped will be a new chapter in the challenging history of redevelopment of the former Winnipeg Stadium site.
In addition to substantial re-design and construction to the interior, the 120,000 square foot building has been completely re-cladded and significant structural work has been done to support more rigorous usage than would have been the case for exclusively retail usage.
In addition to the 55,000 square feet of space that 24-7 Intouch is moving into, a combined Winners/HomeSense store will also occupy another big chunk of the building. Previously an official from TJX Companies Inc., the company that owns Winners, HomeSense and Marshalls, had said the company would make an announcement closer to the opening date which is expected to be some time in the fall.
Sandy Shindleman, CEO of Shindico, the co-owners of the site along with Cadillac Fairview, said, "We have invested in making it more attractive we hope."
There is still about 40,000 square feet of space left to lease including a 3,000 square foot space in the northwest corner that Shindleman said would be suitable for retail.
"It used to be their (Target's) office area," he said. "We've added lots of windows and so there's natural light and loading that would work for retail."
With the only building on the site finally about to be properly occupied -- the building has been empty for about three years after Target abruptly pulled out of the Canadian market after having only operated out of the Polo Park location for a few months -- Shindleman hopes further development of the eight-acre site can proceed.
"Obviously people can see it is there and that there is anchor activity," he said. "Now we can go about re-defining what the rest of the space the rest of the property can look like."
The idea is that it would be a mixed use development with office and retail in whatever combination market demand dictates.
Shindleman jokingly said, "The plan has changed dozens of times and it will probably change dozens more. But hopefully all the changes are heading in the right direction."
Undoubtedly the Target fiasco contributed to the stalled development of the site which, among other things has left province on the hook for $118.7 million, part of $160 million loan for the construction of IGF Stadium that was to have been paid off in the form of city and provincial taxes generated from redeveloping the site.
Martin Cash has been writing a column and business news at the Free Press since 1989. Over those years he’s written through a number of business cycles and the rise and fall (and rise) in fortunes of many local businesses.