The massive Bingham Crossing shopping centre, to be located along the TransCanada Highway between Calgary and Banff, received a major boost recently when Rocky View County gave its approval for Phase 2 of the project.
PHASE 2 OF BINGHAM CROSSING PROJECT APPROVED
Phase 2 of the project by Rencor Developments Inc., includes a large-format anchor building and commercial retail for the state-of-the-art, pedestrian-oriented, open-air shopping and lifestyle centre, in the heart of the Springbank area and just 3.2 kilometres west of Calgary. It is located right across the highway from the Calaway Park amusement centre.
The site has spectacular views of the majestic Rocky Mountains.
“This is a significant and exciting step forward for Bingham Crossing and its co-owners, a project that has been underway for 13 years,” said Ron Renaud, President of Rencor. “Bingham Crossing is an important project for the near communities of Springbank and Harmony, as well as the surrounding region and TransCanada Highway 1 drivers, and will bring much-needed, conveniently-located amenities into the area.”
THE PROJECT INCLUDES 175,000 SQUARE FEET OF RETAIL SPACE
Phase 1 of the project includes 270,000 square feet and Phase 2 will accommodate up to 175,000 square feet of retail.
That will include about 30 to 45 businesses.
The overall development also includes seniors’ housing with 190 residences. The approval is for a large campus building that would include independent living, assisted living, and a number of townhomes in future phases.
Renaud said the large anchor format could be anywhere from 110,000 square feet to 175,000 square feet.
“We’ve been dealing with a couple of food stores. We have a letter of intent out with one of the food stores now that would anchor Phase 1, but this allows us the flexibility of putting a larger anchor in. We’ve had ongoing negotiations with two of the large anchors,” he said.
Construction is expected to start in the spring of next year with an opening in 2022. Rencor is likely to build both initial phases at the same time. Renaud estimates that on total build-out the entire project, with future phases, would be about $750 million.
“We’re in a unique position in that we serve three different markets. One of them is let’s call it the local Springbank community including the new Harmony master-planned community which is 1,800 acres which will have about 4,500 households on its full build-out and it’s got a few phases up and running. There’s basically no services west of Canada Olympic Park (in Calgary) on the west end. So it’s grossly underserved,” explained Renaud.
“In addition to that emerging market, we’re going to serve the west Calgary shoulder market and also what I call the regional market servicing the mountain parks. A lot of traffic is generated on Highway 1 which will increase pretty significantly when the southwest Ring Road opens.
“The other thing that’s unique is that it’s a 300-acre site. So these are the first two phases of a multi-phase project. We’re not constrained by land. And one of the things this COVID-19 pandemic has really brought forward is that people don’t want to be in confined areas. They don’t want to be in let’s say multi-level retail developments with parking underground where they are in confined areas. For example the first phase is 80 acres. You would only need really about 20 acres to put what we’re putting into Phase 1. There will be a lot of expansive areas that allow for people to choose their shopping experience, parking at the front door, lots of open space, lots of landscaping.”
FUTURE PLANS FOR BINGHAM CROSSING COULD INCLUDE ENTERTAINMENT AND WELLNESS USES
Future phases for Bingham Crossing could include entertainment and health and wellness uses.
“I think the days of what I call the power centre are over. I don’t think you’re going to see a lot of really big power centres developed, if any. There could be some residential uses. We’re also looking at a community centre that would enhance the Springbank experience,” said Renaud.
“If you look back at the history of real estate, a lot of the great projects were started in times like these. It’s an unserved market. Everybody sort of lights their hair on fire with the advent of internet shopping and online shopping but there will always be a need for what we call essential retail-food stores. There will always be that need for an experience. I don’t think online is going to take over the majority of retail spending.”