The Village by High Park, Retail what if?

Looking out of the/one of the retail spaces in the building
Looking out of the/one of the retail spaces in the building

It’s  the most obvious location for what type of  retail operation? –  a restaurant, a clothes cleaner, a convenience store, a flower store, a dollar store, a hobby store or art store.  But someone or some corporate entity probably is  planning on making a go the ground-floor space at the The Village by High Park, aka the old Canadian Tire Keele St site. what will/should it be?

As you may know, this tower is a condominium hybrid mix of affordable units and some retail  built by Deltera Construction for the Options for Homes company. For the moment the space is undivided to offer flexibility with the leasing opportunities.

Is this where the chains stores such as Starbucks will place themselves in the Junction?

Below is an image of a similar type and size retail operation at the bottom of a condo development – gives you an idea of what retail along this stretch will look like.

sim store


What we do not need:
– Another coffee shop
– Another convenience store
– Another dollar store

What would be nice:
– Sushi place
– Moneysworth & Best
– Fresh veg. & fruit shop (since the sidewalk will be so deep on Keele, as described in a previous post on the junction blog, there would be ample room for "outdoor stands" as so many residents have spoken about)

I have to say, the choice of brick (real brick, instead of the prefab stuff) and the dark windows are surprisingly pleasing to the eye. I'm impressed with the construction so far.

The issue for this retail space will be a lack of foot traffic. I wouldn't be surprised if a bank moves in here. CIBC? Royal Bank? Scotiabank? I don't think any of them have a real presence in the heart of the Junction … yet. And, there seems to be a trend with banks setting up shop at the base of condo buildings.

If not a bank, then I think the space should be turned into a car wash. The Junction needs another car wash.

how do we feel about the following:

food i.e. possible infestations? Have there been any reports on that? BUT I do like the idea of a fresh fruit/veg store.

art gallery?

Shoppers Drug Mart? Is there one close by? I heard they were popping up all over the city.

I was hoping this condo development would help the retail outlets close by on Dundas, I didn't realize they would have their own places.

I really hope it does, there are so many empty stores and obscure churches

If someone comes into the area with a viable business, it will do well. If not we will keep having one off places like Sebastian's Grill Cafe and Gingerbread Cafe' open and close in 6 months spans.

A lot of people disagree with my insistence on having a "Tim Horton's" type place in the neighbourhood, but my reasoning is mostly because they are viable. They won't be a flash in the pan like so many Dundas W. businesses are.

Once the condo finishes and the mall up near the stockyards opens its a whole new ballgame in the Junction.

Its so hard to say what type of business is viable. I didn't even go into Sebastiens Grill! But I absolutely love Cool Hand of a Girl. I personally think another coffee shop (a nice neighbourhood type place) would actually work. Along with food type shops, artsy shops, sushi places…

What kind of a ball game in the Junction do you predict, Thierry? (just curious) more foot traffic on Dundas West?

Thiery … "a whole new ballgame" … as in more empty stores or more businesses opening along the strip, because of the nearby development?

I predict a slow gentrification of this area, much the same as Ossington & Bloor has seen/will see for the next few years. That was caused by the rents on Queen street being raised by greedy landlords, pushing out the artistic base that made Queen st. "what it is" (IMHO).

I believe once this condo is built and the mall is finished, the bodies will follow. The mall itself will be a massive draw and subdivisions will follow.

No JP, "whole new ball game" as in major retailers won't shy away from the area and only place their new locations in a big box setting like the stockyards.

I wish a local business owner or two posted on here and were willing to share what their rent has been in the past few years, and what it is now (and possibly what it is projected to be in the future). Bet dollars to donuts you'd all be surprised to know that the rents are on the rise because land owners understand that this is an up and coming area and they can command higher rents than in the past.

Simple question: Has anyone's property value increased (and by default their taxes) in the last few years, more-so than in the last 10/15? (I understand inflation has a role to play in the value increase…I'm talking above and beyond the yearly 2 – 3%)

An average size store – average rent in the Junction between Keele St and Quebec ave is 1700 to 2000 or so per month

I say yes to all those restaurants Denise

To Theirry, I don't think Ossington was a slow gentrification at all, I think it was so fast that a lot of residents didn't know what to do. And at this point, they have a lot of bars they can hang out in, but very few places to buy groceries etc regular stuff. I don't think the Junction will go in that direction.

As for Queen landlords, I think the gentrification was just a natural progression, in the works for 40 years. Its still a great place to go out for drinks, but definitely caters to the hipster set.

I'll predict some stores (not what I want, what I think will happen):

Market Basket
Real estate office
Random video store or automated video store
Random dry cleaners

and YES we are getting a Tim Horton's close by. According to this guy who posted on the thread about the new development on St. Clair. And don't hate because you all know you'll be in the Tims' lineup whether you admit it or not:

ScottToronto says Other Retailers include: (excluding Dollarama & TD Canada Trust)

Popeye’s Chicken & Biscuits – May / June 2010
Wild Wing Restaurant – May / June 2010
GNC (General Nutrition Centres) – May / June 2010
Tim Horton’s – Summer / Fall 2010 – not under construction as of yet.
Colour your World – Summer / Fall 2010 – not under construction as of yet.

2 Retail Spaces are still available in Phase I (1 x 4,000 square foot unit, & 1 x 2000 square foot unit) of this development as of early February.
Phase II has not started leasing yet but is scheduled to start in 2011
Phase II will be slightly larger than Phase I and include a restaurant pad and 2 other retail buildings.

I will post more if I hear that any other leases are signed.


is there an lcbo close by? not that i want to attract bad behaviour, but it would be nice if an lcbo like the one at Spadina & King opened up with a Vintages section for those unexpected family drop ins 😉

dj do you even live in this area? You seem to not know anything about it.

LCBO is up the street where Dominion is. And Food infestation worries? Are you being serious? Thats what the DineSafe program is for. Also there is a shoppers right where McDonalds and Harveys is. There was another one on Dundas at Pacific but it closed down and is now apparantly a gym.

My advice would be to take a walk around the hood and then come back and comment.

Sonny P, When I talk to people in the neighbourhood, lots of them don't like to 'stroll' north of the bridge, and want things like banks, a wine store, a pharmacy on the Dundas strip. Maybe that is what DJ meant.

Whats to fear north of the Keele train-bridge? Its that kind of mentality that closes off possible development opportunities to developers because some locals have non-existent stigmas about our neighbourhood

Sonny P… thanks for the info on Timmies! Can I say I called it? 🙂

Hey Sonny,

You’re right I don’t live close by at all, so sorry for asking questions…I love that the residents in the Junction participate in these online convos/blogs (one of the many reasons I want to be a part of this area- because of that Junction hospitality), it really helps people like me who don’t currently live in the area to get a good feel for the area above and beyond what the development offers. Gotta say though, I hope you’re not my neighbour 😉

Thanks everyone for the help in any case 🙂 I appreciate it.

Why would you say that? I didn't insult you in the least.

But I will now…
I hope your not my neighbour too because I can't stand people who constantly use emoticons as a crutch in their writing. In College you counted the use of smiley faces in your essay's word count. You probably have a shirt with Garfield eating a piece of lasanga with big pink puffy letters under it that say "TGIF". When you log off of this blog your next stop is to Facebook so you can see if your Farmville pigs had any babies or if Sherri from Wasaga Beach posted any dancing baby videos.

I don't think it's fear of going north of the tracks, it's just that there is very little between Keele & Dundas and Keele & St. Clair. Perhaps the condo retail space will encourage people to walk north.

Another Coffee shop, corner store or dry cleaners isn't the answer if you're trying to encourage people to venture north, but is is sustainable if the Condo people use it. Sadly I feel that it will end up being all three. A fresh fruit stand like Green Thumb in the BWV would be my choice. Hey how about another sex shop just to piss off the Junctioneer?

I can already assure everyone that this development will not have any restaurants, it says so in my contract/plan, I'm a future resident. ALSO, there will be one retail spot specifically for community use, still not sure what this means but I have a good feeling about it!

"ALSO, there will be one retail spot specifically for community use"

Toronto's first safe injection site perhaps?

re·tail (noun): The sale of goods or commodities in small quantities directly to consumers.

So if you don't live in the community you can't shop there?

Rodger,I meant to say that one of the retail lots/spaces/store-fronts (non-apartment), will be for community use, not for actual retail.. sorry English is my 4th language…

Sonny P, all those new stores you mention, ie GNC, Timmies, are you saying those are going to be up near St Clair, or down by the intersection of Keele & Dundas?

Sonny that'd be perfect for the parent's in the neighbourhood…. then they could sit around more, talking about idealistic ideas like "what is war" and "how does this art make me feel"

yes, who cares about idealistic ideas? Let's get back to talking about who would make an ideal business tenant in a yet to be completed condo building.

I agree with you Theirry. I have been living 'north of the bridge' for almost nine years now and I must say that I am thrilled with how the area has developed over the last few years. It is no longer the Stockyards, people! For those of you who don't share in that mentality and don't think that you're just too good to venture North here are a few businesses you will find. Starbucks, Metro, LCBO, Blockbuster, Dry Cleaners, CIBC, Canadian Tire, Home Depot, Staples, Rona, Future Shop, Esso with car wash, Harvey's & Swiss Chalet, Bairrada Churrasqueira, Vienense Restaurant (great Portuguese food) and others. You should also take a look at the neighbourhood on the North side of St. Clair, between Gunns Road and Symms Road…It's pretty nice! Have an open mind…you will only benefit from it!

I'd personally also like to express that most people that find themselves with out health insurance are normally students, self-employed and those that are jobless. More than half in the uninsured are under the age of Thirty-five. They do not sense they are requiring health insurance since they are young in addition to healthy. The income is often spent on real estate, food, and also entertainment. Lots of people that do go to work either 100 % or part-time are not made available insurance through their work so they proceed without due to rising expense of health insurance in the United States. Thanks for the ideas you talk about through this blog.

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