For future residents of Rodeo Drive, the Shops at Don Mills will become, more or less, on their arrival the local “high street,” the go-to place to buy a strip sirloin at McEwans, or a bottle of chard at the LCBO, or some eyeliner at Murale. It’s a one-stop shop-ping experience with shops, restaurants, and bars radiating off a village common. When Cadillac Fairview decided to mothball its old cavernous indoor mall, the Don Mills Shopping Centre, they were taking a bit of a gamble. Would the community embrace an open-air mall, especially in the chillier months?
Well, it’s a gamble that’s clearly paid off, and just a few weeks ago the company announced a $21-million upgrade of the CF Shops at Don Mills to further enhance the user’s shopping, dining and entertainment experience. Among the new features: new cobblestone-like streets, enhanced atmospheric lighting, wider sidewalks, new street furniture and a new entertainment/event space to complement the village common at the centre of the mall.
Cadillac Fairview’s Niall Collins, Senior Vice-president, Development, isn’t at all sur-prised that folks from across the GTA have embraced their “inner Angeleno,” flocking in droves to Ontario’s first “open-air lifestyle shopping centre.” “Don’t forget, the original Don Mills Centre back in the 1960s was an outdoor mall, and when we were exploring the new concept, we visited similar kinds of malls in the US, many of them with climates similar to ours.” Indeed one of the most successful.
FOLKS FROM ACROSS THE GTA HAVE EMBRACED THEIR “INNER ANGELENO,” FLOCKING IN DROVES TO ONTARIO’S FIRST OPEN-AIR LIFESTYLE SHOPPING CENTRE.
such open-air malls is in Minneapolis, Minne-sota whose sub-arctic climate makes Toron-to’s seem tropical. The trend is becoming so pervasive that the influential New Republic magazine recently published an article trum-peting, “The Mall is Dead. Americans Shop at Lifestyle Centers Now.” CF Shops at Don Mills is clearly ahead of the curve, and adding full-time residents to the mix will just make the vil-lage experience even more delicious.