by Melissa Strle, Aug. 23, 2015
Almost every town and city in Canada has a mall. Some are larger and some smaller, while some have high profile tenants and others are more understated. The biggest mall operators in Canada include Cadillac Fairview, Oxford, and Ivanhoe Cambridge.
During this study, we conducted an analysis to determine the top malls in Canada as measured by the highest sales per square foot. To qualify, malls were required to have over 500,000 square feet of retail space. So which Canadian malls ranked the highest in terms of sales per square feet?
According to the analysis, the top 20 malls ranked by sales per square feet include,
- Eaton Centre, Toronto, ON.
- Oakridge Centre, Vancouver, BC.
- Yorkdale Shopping Centre, Toronto, ON.
- Southgate Centre, Edmonton, AB.
- Chinook Centre, Calgary, AB.
- Rideau Centre, Ottawa, ON.
- Market Mall, Calgary, AB.
- Sherway Gardens, Toronto, ON.
- Metropolis at Metrotown, Burnaby, BC.
- Richmond Centre, Richmond, BC.
- Polo Park Shopping Centre, Winnipeg, MB.
- Carrefour Laval, Laval, QU.
- Fairview Mall, Toronto, ON.
- Square One, Mississauga, ON.
- Conestoga Mall, Waterloo, ON.
- West Edmonton Mall, Edmonton, AB.
- Kingsway Mall, Edmonton, AB.
- Guildford Town Centre, Surrey, BC.
- Markville Shopping Centre, Markham, ON.
- Vaughan Mills, Vaughan, ON.
Nine out of the twenty top malls were in the province of Ontario. Ontario’s population of 13.7 million helps support these high-performing malls. Next, Alberta had five of top twenty malls, followed by British Columbia with four in the top twenty. Quebec and Manitoba rounded out the top twenty with one mall each.
Pacific Centre in Vancouver, British Columbia rang in with high sales per square foot of $1,546, but didn’t make the cut of the top twenty in this report since it has just less than 500,000 square feet of retail space.
Other notable mentions with high sales per square feet and low total square foot retail space include Holt Renfrew Centre in Toronto, Peter Pond Mall in Fort McMurray, Royal Bank Plaza in Toronto, Toronto Dominion Centre in Toronto, and Bayview Village in Toronto.
Hudson’s Bay is an anchor tenant in all of the top 20 malls except Vaughan Mills. However, Vaughan Mills contains Home Outfitters, which is also owned by the Hudson’s Bay Company. Vaughan Mills is one of the true factory outlet malls in Canada.
Safeway has the most presence from a grocery store chain in the top twenty. It has three stores within the top twenty spots, followed by T&T Supermarkets with two spots and Superstore with one store.
Sport Chek was the second biggest mall anchor after Hudson’s Bay Company with eight stores in the top twenty. This was followed by Sears (7), H&M (7), Old Navy (6), Winners (5), and Simons (4). Forever 21 and Holt Renfrew also appeared in the top twenty list and it appears as though Nordstrom is on its way to testing Canadian waters with a planned expansion in Toronto Eaton Centre in 2016.
Mall operators and stores in Canada are closely watching the success that companies have within the mall environment, especially since such companies like Target Canada, Reitmans Inc., and Le Chateau have struggled here.
Canadian malls typically undergo renovations to update their looks and only two major malls have been constructed in Canada since 1989; Vaughan Mills in Toronto and Cross Iron Mills in Calgary.
Industry Canada reports that since 2011, Canadian malls have experienced approximately US$600 in retail sales per square foot per year. The United States has not fared as well, generating approximately US$400.
The mall landscape continues to change and only the successful, innovative and highly competitive companies are likely to maintain market share over the long term.