Mississauga’s Square One shopping centre has achieved $1 billion in annual retail sales for the first time, and it's only the second Canadian mall to reach such a milestone. The mall has recently seen renovations to its common areas as well as the addition of new retailers, not to mention a recent expansion that added a luxury wing that is anchored by a 130,000 square foot Holt Renfrew.
The 2.2 million square foot Square One is one of the largest malls in Canada, and also one of the highest selling per square foot, according to Retail Council of Canada’s Shopping Centre Study. Square One now boasts sales in excess of $1,000 per square foot annually, which isn't surprising — the mall is also one of the country’s busiest, with over 24 million annual visitors.
"This incredible sales milestone echoes our mission to create a connected and thriving city centre that inspires our community, maximizes the infinite opportunities of our city and resonates beyond our boundaries," says Greg Taylor, Director and General Manager, Square One. "With unprecedented redevelopment, along with the arrival of highly coveted brands to Square One, we will continue to be a passionate and genuine partner in creating and driving positive growth and development in Mississauga's downtown core. This milestone heralds a new era for Square One as a world-class destination for fashion, lifestyle and entertainment."
Shoppers are attracted by the vast assortment of stores in the mall, which continues to grow as the mall continues its transformation. Mr. Taylor noted that landlords Oxford Properties Group and Alberta Investment Management Corporation (AIMCo) have invested over $500 million into the centre over the past several years. Common areas have been renovated, including enhanced lighting and limestone flooring that is consistent throughout the centre. The elevated ‘Food Central’ food hall debuted in August of 2013, and a north expansion of the mall opened September of 2014. In November of 2015, Sport Chek opened a 75,000 square foot flagship in part of the mall’s former Sears space, while preparations were underway for the opening of a new major anchor tenant.
In the spring of 2016, Quebec-based fashion retailer La Maison Simons opened a beautiful figure3 designed 113,000 square foot location in the mall, which is a first for the retailer in the Greater Toronto Area, as well as for Ontario. Simons occupies much of the mall’s former Sears location, with Sport Chek occupying the rest.
In July of 2016, the mall unveiled its impressive luxury wing, featuring soaring ceilings, ample natural light, and a roster of leading retailers that include Salvatore Ferragamo, Harry Rosen, Kate Spade, Rolex and Wolford. Holt Renfrew anchors the new wing in with its 130,000 square foot store — the impressive space features soaring ceilings, ample use of marble, and a roster of luxury brands that were never before available in Mississauga (including concessions for Gucci, Tiffany & Co., Moncler, Links of London and others).
Mr. Taylor explained how Mississauga is booming, and how Square One is shaping up to be the heart of the city’s expanding downtown. Mississauga’s population continues to grow rapidly — now with over 750,000 residents, the city is projected to grow to 812,000 by the year 2031. Square One’s catchment area extends beyond the city of Mississauga to include affluent communities such as Oakville and Burlington, and even some shoppers from western parts of Toronto.
Retailers continue to see success in the mall, noted Mr. Taylor, including large format retailers such as Zara and Urban Outfitters, as well as popular brands such as MUJI and Marc Cain. A number of brands not typically found in Canadian malls can be found at Square One, including Ben Sherman and Urban Decay.
Mr. Taylor indicated that there will be a number of exciting announcements to be made for the mall in the next while, as the landlord continues to invest in the centre. Aritzia’s current location is expanding to become a flagship for the brand, and Lululemon is also seeing renovations. This week, as well, The Rec Room announced that it would be opening a 44,000 square foot entertainment centre in part of the mall’s former Target space. More announcements will be made for Square One in the coming months, as the centre continues to solidify its presence as the most prominent mall in Mississauga and the surrounding area.
Canada's first shopping centre to officially surpass the billion dollar mark was also an Oxford mall — in July of 2013, Toronto’s Yorkdale Shopping Centre announced that it was the first in Canada to achieve retail sales in excess of $1 billion. With a recent expansion and another on the way, Yorkdale could eventually see $2 billion in sales, making it one of the world's top performers. It’s clear that Canadian shopping malls are not dead, and that those that continue to innovate will also continue to see success.
*Photos were supplied.