Loblaws screwed?

It’s been an early start to spring and the Canadian Tire garden centre (below) has been open for weeks and doing good business.

Meanwhile, the Loblaws garden centre (below) has been sitting there locked up tight, even though it’s been ready to launch for a long time.

Apparently they can’t open until the City inspector shows up, and he appears to be on a l-o-n-g coffee break.

Maybe Loblaws will boost its bottom line a bit by increased business at its pharmacy, busting its union and rebranding, but the store is usually pretty dead – the competition from Rexall, Metro and especially FreshCo is stiff, and it doesn’t help that places like Giant Tiger and Canadian Tire are now selling food.

Once the Zellers stores in the Hazeldean and Bayshore malls are converted to Targets, I predict that the Bells Corners Zellers/Loblaws location will be either boarded-up or turned into office space for the BIA and the councillor. A better result would be its conversion to a T & T superstore with mixed housing units above the retail.

The T&T on Hunt Club in the Deep South is raking in the cash, so maybe a Bells Corners location to serve the west end oriental community (and other budget-conscious consumers) would work – we already have the Alliance Emmanuel Church as a magnet. Maybe a Bells Corners T&T+ could take a bite out of the Costco market?

It’d be a shame if we lost our Loblaws. I don’t often shop there, but it’s still a great place to visit with a long history in Bells Corners.

It’s a classy joint with a lot of nice people. I wish them well – hope they get their garden centre open soon.

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7 Responses to Loblaws screwed?

  1. Loblaws owns T&T Supermarket. They bought the small chain some time back. With Zellers closing I thought a T&T might be an option for the empty space.

  2. Dave Mc says:

    I bet a T&T in BC would really bring in a big niche market. Let the T&T on Hunt Club bring in customers from South and East and we’ll take care of everyone West!

    – Mmmm – cheap, healthy and delicious Chinese vegetables. A Bells Corners T&T would serve more than a niche market – maybe even the councillor would shop there, a first step to breaking his doughnut addiction. Better nutrition might lead to better ethics – it’s worth a try.

  3. lisad67 says:

    T & T would definitely attract people here.

  4. Aprilfool says:

    I would love to see Loblaws expand and put a Goodlife or another gym in there. Bells Corners needs a gym!

  5. sba says:

    We need a Superstore like the one in Kanata where you can buy dishes, bed stuff, kids and women’s clothes, kids’ toys, groceries – anything you need is there! It would be amazing and A LOT of people would go! Screw the T&T. Where the hell am I going to buy my kids toys and clothes?

    They have NOTHING here in Bell Corners. Giant Tiger is CRAP, Canadian Tire has like 10 toys and Winners has no kids’ stuff. Ridiculous. And people just keep building Tim Hortons and hotels!

    • Carlos says:

      A Superstore would be nice but I don’t see it happening. Both Metro and Loblaws run their stores as if Bells Corner’s is an afterthought. These are small stores and no effort is put into running them properly. Pretty much any day of the week you’ll have multiple holes on shelves where they have run out of product. I often find myself leaving Bells Corners to buy groceries because of lack of selection/lack of stock.

      It will be interesting to see what happens after Target opens. Target has a deal with Sobey’s to sell groceries. I have no idea how much floor space they plan to devote to food items but, given that Targets will be near each end of the strip, we might see some loss to Bells Corners grocery stores — especially from Crystal Beach and Bayshore residents. The severity of the impact will really depend on how inconvenient parking is at the mall is, and how broad Target’s offerings will be.

      Given they can’t be bothered to run their current small stores properly, I can’t see them investing in expansion. For that to happen Bells Corners needs a substantial increase in population.

      This is certainly possible, given the amount of undeveloped land, but it’s a long way off. Canada’s real estate market is going to stagnate for a decade, so I’m not sure how aggressive developers plan on being.

  6. lisad67 says:

    There is no vision for Bells Corners…the prattlings of Rick Chiarelli…nothing has come to fruition…it IS shabby looking as one other poster said. We are losing businesses left, right and centre…a lack of local employment…the area is becoming “ghettoized.” There is NO reason to come here. I have lived here 14 yrs…I am a walker…had 3 sons…so we did things in the area a lot when I was a stay-at-home mom.

    The steady decline has been painful to watch.

    No one seems to get that we should be mining our rural/urban connection…farmers markets, hanging baskets, scarecrows, any sort of seasonal decoration uniformity, a country blacktop dance in a huge parking lot (Loblaws)…benches with planters for seniors, etc…not monolithic median planters with pathetically small flowers in them.

    The strip mall owners are never going to rent their places out at their insane prices…they need to entice business to come with free months and other incentives…instead they just drive people into distress and they leave.

    There is nowhere to really poke around, browse, enjoy relaxing coffees on a patio…I miss Second Cup…Starbucks and The Bohemian Kitchen are too small and getting a bit stale. A place I love is Art Is In bakery at CityCentre…a crappy area but a booming business…it helps that Tunney’s is not far…we too need something funky, and with DND coming…they will want quality eclectic cafes, bakeries etc.

    Bells Corners could have such a real small town feel if the power elite played on that. This takes a visionary, someone willing to step on a couple of bigger business toes to get it done.

    You have to attract people to the strip…it has to be enjoyable and a magnet…not depressing and repelling.

    I am almost ashamed of the area now 😦

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