RioCan unveils Silver City redevelopment plan

OBJ Staff
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As part of a plan to revitalize its malls in major Canadian cities, retail leasing giant RioCan is proposing to build a 30-storey residential tower at its Silver City Gloucester development.

RioCan REIT is proposing to build a number of residential towers at the Silver City Gloucester retail complex.

The country’s largest real estate investment trust has filed plans with the city for the first phase of a “multi-building residential development” at the property south of Ogilvie Road and north of Regional Road 174 near the Blair transitway stop.

The first tower would be located just west of the future LRT station slated to open in 2018. It would include more than 300 units, with 30 underground parking spaces and 81 outdoor spaces for residents, and would have “communal amenity space” as part of its three-storey podium.

RioCan says the size of the existing retail plaza to the west, which includes mostly clothing stores, would be reduced in the first phase, setting the stage for “future opportunities ... to create a compact, mixed-use transit-oriented development.”

The developer is seeking a zoning amendment to allow construction of two additional highrises that would eventually replace those retail outlets.

The company’s long-term vision for the site calls for “a mix of residential housing types and community amenities” as well as “retail and commercial opportunities” and “high-quality office space.”

Documents included in the new filing show at least 10 additional mixed-use buildings that RioCan is proposing for future phases. The plan features a mix of residential, retail and office space, as well as a community centre and plaza connected to a park, a pedestrian promenade and other unspecified amenities.

“Over time, City Park will become a vibrant and active community and destination that adapts to long-term changing market conditions, provides development flexibility and creates an intensified, active and mixed-use, transit-oriented community,” says the document, which was prepared by FOTENN Consultants.

Silver City is just one of several local malls RioCan is looking at redeveloping in an effort to ensure its properties remain viable amid changing consumer shopping habits.

Last month, the firm held an open house where it presented plans to build up to five mixed-use towers at the site of the Westgate Shopping Centre over the next couple of decades.

A RioCan spokesman said the company aims to invest more than $200 million to reinvent Westgate by replacing asphalt with green space and housing units. It is also looking at a similar proposal for Elmvale Acres Shopping Centre on St. Laurent Boulevard.

RioCan said it is considering projects at malls in other Canadian cities, including Calgary, Edmonton, Montreal and Toronto.

Organizations: RioCan, Westgate Shopping Centre

Geographic location: Silver City, Ogilvie Road, Regional Road City Park Calgary Edmonton Montreal Toronto

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