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Exclusive Tour: The $350M Sherway Redevelopment


When you've got a redevelopment the size of Cadillac Fairview's $350M Sherway Gardens project, regular communication is key to keeping owners, construction managers, tenants, and shoppers happy. (It works for marriages and hockey teams.) Bisnow got an exclusive tour of the project and it's management secrets yesterday.

Sherway general manager Andy Traynor and property manager Brian O'Hoski took us around. It included a walk across the roof of the shopping centre in the northwest quadrant, which gave us a full view of the work being done on the parking areas and the new shopping areas, quarterbacked by over 300 construction workers from construction manager PCL. In January, they broke ground on the redevelopment--a 250K SF expansion, pushing it to 1.2M SF when finished in the fall of 2016. There are twice-weekly meetings with PCL to go over schedules and logistics, so both tenants and mall customers are inconvenienced as little as possible.

"There's a ton of collaboration and coordination that goes into this," Andy says. "There's a lot of them saying, 'This is what we need to do.' Then there's a lot of us saying, 'Sorry folks, this won't happen... let's brainstorm and figure out something else.'" This Thursday is a huge milestone: the opening of 200 parking stalls in the first phase of the new parking deck. In the end there will be 1,200 spots in the multi-level north lot and another 700 parking spots in the south lot next to where the new Nordstrom store will open in 2016. (Now you'll just need to be able to find your car when you get out.)

Overall, the redevelopment will encompass 50 stores, four restaurants, and two new parking decks. Phase 1, set for May 2015, will see Sporting Life and the new food court open in the north expansion. In September 2015, the full north expansion opens, followed by the opening of Nordstrom in 2016. The Nordstrom store will be the "icing on the cake," Andy says. (Though we'll no longer have a good excuse not to dress well.)

Part of the contingency plan to help alleviate annoyances has been $8 valet parking near the Starbucks and Shoppers Drug Mart entrances, a program run by an outside company. Andy says they will keep it as a service even after construction is completed. Andy has been running the shopping centre for five years, and before that oversaw the redevelopment projects at CF's Promenade and Hillcrest shopping centre (formerly owned by CF). The Sherway project, though, is a whole other ballgame. "This is what we dream of in our industry, to take a great shopping centre and take it to the next level," he says. "This is a project of a lifetime."

In the end, the objective is to further define Sherway Gardens as another super regional shopping centre option, competing with the Eaton Centre to the east and Yorkdale to the north. (When shopping centres compete, Christmas wins!) Snapped by the entrance to where Nordstrom will be situated is Andy, Brian, Sherway's senior marketing director Lisa Resnic, and marketing coordinator Lauren Hanley.