By Mario Toneguzzi
A new Asian-style mall in the Calgary region is set to be completed by March of next year with about 95 per cent of the more than 500 stores already sold out.
Eli Swirsky, president of The Torgan Group, which is developing the New Horizon Mall with the MPI Property Group, told Retail Insider that great progress is being made in the construction of the unique shopping centre, located directly across from CrossIron Mills in Rocky View County just north of Calgary city limits.
“We are almost sold out. More than 95 per cent,” said Swirsky, of the concept where business owners buy space, as opposed to renting it, in the shopping centre.
“It’s a great concept. It’s a proven concept that’s unique and it appeals to the small investor. This is a project for the ma’s and pa’s, not for the big chains. It’s something that is hard to find and people are really liking it - to be able to control their own destiny and have their own store . . . The concept is unique. In Alberta, there’s nothing like it.”
It will have more than 500 retail stores in 320,000 square feet on two floors. On the main floor, stores will range from 285 square feet to 855 square feet and are priced between $169,000 and $700,000.
“It will be a window shopper's wonderland with thousands of ever-changing displays showcased behind generous glass storefronts. This floor will also be home to the main stage which will host numerous events during the year, including cultural events, holiday celebrations and fashion shows. For the first time ever in Alberta, each retail store is purchased not leased,” say the developers in information posted on the mall’s website.
The second level will feature 26 sold out units and will seat over 300 shoppers. The second level will also have a traditional Chinese stage that will serve as a cultural venue.
Ledcor Construction Ltd. is heading up the project.
There are more than 350 underground parking stalls as well.
“It’s a great destination as far as location. It’s a proven retail destination. People know they’re going to succeed,” says Swirsky. “So they just have to open their store and people will flood in.”
*Photos are courtesy of New Horizon Mall.
Mario Toneguzzi, based in Calgary has 37 years of experience as a daily newspaper writer, columnist and editor. He worked for 35 years at the Calgary Herald covering sports, crime, politics, health, city and breaking news, and business. For 12 years as a business writer, his main beats were commercial and residential real estate, retail, small business and general economic news. He nows works on his own as a freelance writer and consultant in communications and media relations/training. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org.