Regent Park Revitalization Gets Another Retail Infusion
Revitalized Regent Park this summer will welcome two new food-service providers: Wendy’s, opening a 2,045 SF space on Dundas Street East, and Subway/Yogen Fruz, a 1,321 SF location on Regent Park Boulevard, the spine that ties the reconstructed neighbourhood together. Daniels Corp VP and Regent Park revamp point man Martin Blake (snapped below sampling produce at the local FreshCo by Sobeys) tells us the new QSRs are not only a convenience for residents; like other retailers in the revitalization effort, they'll also be providing training and jobs. “These groups are looking forward to employing people in the neighbourhood."
An area that once had no commercial action (Martin says Regent Park’s previous Garden City design created an “economic moat” around it) is now seeing loads of it. A 10k SF Shoppers Drug Mart opened on Dundas last year, and St. Michael’s Hospital Sumac Creek Health Centre occupies 26k SF on Regent Park Boulevard (above), adjacent to George Brown College’s new Fashion Exchange training centre. The area's first restaurant, Paintbox Bistro, launched in 2013, joining revitalization pioneers Tim Hortons, Rogers, FreshCo and RBC, the first bank to open in Regent Park since the 1940s.
Daniels' leasing team is seeking tenants for the 5k SF of remaining storefront space, and Martin says possibilities here include flex-use units for local entrepreneurs and small businesses, including ones incubated at the aforementioned Fashion Exchange. A dozen projects will be under development in Regent Park in 2016, a mix of market condos (like The Bartholomew, above) and Toronto Community Housing rental buildings. “Everything south of Dundas is under construction this year,” says Martin, who notes future phases will include senior housing and purpose-built rental projects.