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Edmonton City Centre Mall (Renovations) | ?m | 2s | LaSalle Investment Management

There are more than a few major Downtown landlords, owners, investment companies and decision makers who quite honestly are appalled with the state of Downtown Edmonton and are reluctant to proceed with major investments in the hundreds of millions of clams until things improve.

I'm sure that you can use your imagination, but it's not too hard to figure out who and where these might be for many are planned, rumoured or even previous public announcements.

This includes retail, office podiums, hotels and residential asset classes.
If there truly is unmet demand, then these investment dollars will be invested in other quadrants within the city. It's not like these downtown property owners are incorrect in their assessment of the state of downtown, but all this talk is passive lobbying for a subsidy.
 
I can tell you first hand some of the recaps I've heard from decision makers coming to Edmonton from MTL, TOR, Calgary et al. to review the market and sadly some of the adjectives they used to describe the Downtown. These are Downtown asset owners and projects that were not merely conceptual; it's not about reallocation (although a risk) within Edmonton, it was a go-no-go for their Downtown project or redirecting that capital to other markets that were more attractive and performing better.
 
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I went to Sportchek in ECC today to check out the liquidation sale and then went on with my daily walk downtown. I'm about to go on a rant, but I'm not really sure where else to post this.

Downtown Edmonton is an absolute dead zone and in general just a disaster. Of all the major cities in Canada, I'd say we have the second worst downtown(first would go to Winnipeg, although we aren't that far behind). The amount of social disorder, chaos, lack of maintenance, disjointed feeling streets and empty parking lots makes one wonder where do we really go from here? From 2016-2019 things were actually on the upswing in the core, probably for the first time since the 80's. There were many articles, reddit posts etc. boasting about how Edmonton is the next "happening" city and working downtown at that time, it actually kind of felt like it. Things were beginning to buzz and we finally seemed to be gaining some momentum. The Covid hit, our new city council elected, and things spiralled out of control.

Yes there are some positives. There are generally more people out and about during the work week downtown. Ice Disitrct is a glimmer of hope, as is the Parks towers and Warehouse District Park. Stationlands and Falcon will bring in a few hundred residents (assuming most units are actually leased) and the best thing to have happened in recent years is the development of an "Uptown" district in Oliver/124 street. These projects, among a couple of others, are what do give me some kind of hope. But walking around daily, you can't help but notice downtown is hollowing out and is neglected. All that momentum we had going on a few years ago has all but evaporated. The downtown is dirty, crumbled sidewalks galore, mismatched lighting poles, empty buildings and sketchy characters in all corners of the core make it obvious why no one is wanting to invest too much here right now.

It's embarrassing the capital city of the richest province of a G7 country is in this kind of state. At this point I'm wondering how much worst will it get before things slowly start to turn around. We need more residents downtown, but how can anyone really be enticed to live there with this shit show going on? I'm of the opinion that we NEED to attract businesses to set up shop here and to help foster small to medium startups and other businesses as much as possible to set them up for success. Look at what Shopify has become in Ottawa as an example.

As for ECC, the truth is there is really no justification for this to be a retail mall any longer. With Sportchek and Winners soon gone, this should present an opportunity for owners to get a clean slate and reimagine ECC as a whole to be something different than just a retail mall now. What that might look like or may be, should make for some interesting discussion. We're a metro area of 1.5 million with several malls, one of which is the biggest on the continent. It's time to stop trying to attract or retain traditional indoor retail options and get back to the drawing board. However the CTV article makes it look like the owners won't be doing much, if at all, until the social disorder gets straightened out,

Sorry for the rant all, just had to post this somewhere. I think the announcement of DeepMind leaving and ECC on its deathbed go me triggered this week.
 
'It's embarrassing the capital city of the richest province of a G7 country is in this kind of state.'

It embarrassing, disheartening and horrifying that we have left behind so many of our brothers and sisters such that desperation has set in and separately permit so much disorder and simply turn the other way.

Obviously complex and needing compassion, but also less tolerance of criminal activities, violence, vandalism and disorder.
 
I went to Sportchek in ECC today to check out the liquidation sale and then went on with my daily walk downtown. I'm about to go on a rant, but I'm not really sure where else to post this.

Downtown Edmonton is an absolute dead zone and in general just a disaster. Of all the major cities in Canada, I'd say we have the second worst downtown(first would go to Winnipeg, although we aren't that far behind). The amount of social disorder, chaos, lack of maintenance, disjointed feeling streets and empty parking lots makes one wonder where do we really go from here? From 2016-2019 things were actually on the upswing in the core, probably for the first time since the 80's. There were many articles, reddit posts etc. boasting about how Edmonton is the next "happening" city and working downtown at that time, it actually kind of felt like it. Things were beginning to buzz and we finally seemed to be gaining some momentum. The Covid hit, our new city council elected, and things spiralled out of control.

Yes there are some positives. There are generally more people out and about during the work week downtown. Ice Disitrct is a glimmer of hope, as is the Parks towers and Warehouse District Park. Stationlands and Falcon will bring in a few hundred residents (assuming most units are actually leased) and the best thing to have happened in recent years is the development of an "Uptown" district in Oliver/124 street. These projects, among a couple of others, are what do give me some kind of hope. But walking around daily, you can't help but notice downtown is hollowing out and is neglected. All that momentum we had going on a few years ago has all but evaporated. The downtown is dirty, crumbled sidewalks galore, mismatched lighting poles, empty buildings and sketchy characters in all corners of the core make it obvious why no one is wanting to invest too much here right now.

It's embarrassing the capital city of the richest province of a G7 country is in this kind of state. At this point I'm wondering how much worst will it get before things slowly start to turn around. We need more residents downtown, but how can anyone really be enticed to live there with this shit show going on? I'm of the opinion that we NEED to attract businesses to set up shop here and to help foster small to medium startups and other businesses as much as possible to set them up for success. Look at what Shopify has become in Ottawa as an example.

As for ECC, the truth is there is really no justification for this to be a retail mall any longer. With Sportchek and Winners soon gone, this should present an opportunity for owners to get a clean slate and reimagine ECC as a whole to be something different than just a retail mall now. What that might look like or may be, should make for some interesting discussion. We're a metro area of 1.5 million with several malls, one of which is the biggest on the continent. It's time to stop trying to attract or retain traditional indoor retail options and get back to the drawing board. However the CTV article makes it look like the owners won't be doing much, if at all, until the social disorder gets straightened out,

Sorry for the rant all, just had to post this somewhere. I think the announcement of DeepMind leaving and ECC on its deathbed go me triggered this week.

Lots of media attention now to the $5million the province allocated to downtown in Alberta's two big cities in the last budget. Not enough, but a start. Need to keep pressure on.

Sohi is making a statement today about that funding.

From the DBA, it sounds like they are going to try to use some of that money to support new businesses to locate downtown.

Province has that new task force, too.

NDP released a dt plan for YYC but never did for YEG. I asked downtown NDP mla for about that last year and he said one was coming.
 
It's very sad and the task becomes more challenging when you have more people becoming disenchanted. It's going to take more than office workers coming back.
 
NDP released a dt plan for YYC but never did for YEG. I asked downtown NDP mla for about that last year and he said one was coming.

David Shepherd is a nice guy and attends almost every downtown festival known to man but I don't ever recall him talking about a downtown plan.
 
i’m not sure that calgarians are braver… i would assert it is more likely that there are more destinations attracting more people and the more people there are the safer they are (and/or the higher their perceptions of safety are). destinations attract people and people make destinations successful. and that of course becomes a self fulfilling prophesy, just as the opposite can also be self fulfilling.
Well they must be braver, because they are headed downtown on the weekend despite the social disorder unlike here.

Of course, Edmonton has a long history of neglecting its downtown and then wondering why visitors go away with such negative impressions.

So maybe they are also smarter as well as braver. We just let things fall apart and get more and more vacant stores. It is becoming truly embarrassing.
 
Detroit 2.0..... I been calling it since oil started crashing in 2014 that it's going to get real bad if governments don't do something about it. Well.... imho at this point any traction in the right direction was obliterated by Covid and the way Trudeau's government dealt with it.

We're in for a looooong ride...
 
There are more than a few major Downtown landlords, owners, investment companies and decision makers who quite honestly are appalled with the state of Downtown Edmonton and are reluctant to proceed with major investments in the hundreds of millions of clams until things improve.

I'm sure that you can use your imagination, but it's not too hard to figure out who and where these might be for many are planned, rumoured or even previous public announcements.

This includes retail, office podiums, hotels and residential asset classes.
So if they exist, when do they speak up? Or are they also just too timid? What are they waiting for Christmas, or things to fall apart even more?

The time for action has long since come and it says little about our supposed business and community leaders that they all seem to be doing much less than they should.
 
So if they exist, when do they speak up? Or are they also just too timid? What are they waiting for Christmas, or things to fall apart even more?

The time for action has long since come and it says little about our supposed business and community leaders that they all seem to be doing much less than they should.
I agree, more pressure needs to be put on governments to highlight the problems that there are. The people who can influence need to speak up.

Sometimes I also wonder, did we let the SJW's win too much in our society? How has it become acceptable to see people with mental issues put a syringe in their body or smoking glass pipes in broad daylight, on a busy downtown corner or a public park that everyone should feel safe enjoying??
 
So if they exist, when do they speak up? Or are they also just too timid? What are they waiting for Christmas, or things to fall apart even more?

The time for action has long since come and it says little about our supposed business and community leaders that they all seem to be doing much less than they should.

They have spoken up (102ave/103st event last fall), but maybe not enough and maybe not enough from those decision-makers from other cities.

I specifically recall a major investment group taking a cab back from Manulife to the Mac because their morning walk over was THAT bad.
 
David Shepherd is a nice guy and attends almost every downtown festival known to man but I don't ever recall him talking about a downtown plan.
I emailed him about the issue last year after they proudly released their YYC plan - asking why ndp mla's elected largely in yeg would not be spending some of their time addressing yeg downtown problems since they are our constituency reps.
He replied back, agreed with the comment and said they would have a yeg downtown plan and were working on it.
 
I emailed him about the issue last year after they proudly released their YYC plan - asking why ndp mla's elected largely in yeg would not be spending some of their time addressing yeg downtown problems since they are our constituency reps.
He replied back, agreed with the comment and said they would have a yeg downtown plan and were working on it.
Here is what David Shepherd said to me on April 12, 2022

"As the local MLA I’ve been keeping in close touch with the EDBA, frontline agencies, the local community leagues & our city representatives on the ongoing challenges for our downtown and have been advocating re: the need for housing & resources to address the ongoing drug poisoning crisis.

And I have been pushing our team re: a plan/strategy similar to what we just released for Calgary. I’m happy to say the work on that is underway with me, Janis Irwin, Deron Bilous & Joe Ceci.

It’s my hope we’ll have something to say on that sooner rather than later."

It's so nice to know Edmonton elected NDP MLAs to develop a Calgary plan and that we're still waiting on the Edmonton version. I'm not knocking that they did a plan for the city to the south full of cabinet ministers, but would expect at least equal attention here.
Sohi wants UCP to treat Edmonton equally - well I think that goes for the NDP, too.
And it's not that an NDP plan is going to solve our problems, but who is advocating on our behalf provincially?
 
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