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Bjays92

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Another major KW development that is currently in progress is the revitalization of Fairview Park Mall, into the new "Grand Market District"

Originally the proposal consisted of two phases. Redevelopment of the former Sears building and construction of two new mixed use/office buildings along Fairway Road.

The second phase was then the addition of new condo towers along Kingsway drive.

It looks as though plans may have changed due to the pandemic however, possibly with more focus on the residential components, so it's not 100% clear what's going on here.

However here's the site:

B88431688Z.1_20181030160034_000_GKECLMVP.3-0_Gallery.jpg

Credit: the record

Here are the renderings for the recladding of the sears building plus the additional buildings along Fairway.

new-fairview-plans.png
download.jpeg
Kitchener_GrandMArketDistrict400.png
cf-grand-market-district.jpg
cf-grand-market-district-office-building.jpg


And some photos taken by me today.

20210930_104350.jpg

Several pictures of the faux smoke stack or the faux-stack as I call it.
20210930_104422.jpg

Construction still underway on the one side
20210930_104607.jpg

The complete reclad former Sears frontage
20210930_104457.jpg
20210930_104939.jpg

The heritage facade retention along the one side of the building
20210930_104945.jpg

Faux water tower
20210930_104640.jpg


Walmart recladding
20210930_105018.jpg


Additionally the parking lot for the second "phase" of phase one, the new buildings near Fairway Rd, is currently blocked off to traffic but not a whole lot else happening there yet.
20210930_105048.jpg
 

Bjays92

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(Continued)

Some of the landscaping work done around the building

20210930_104902.jpg


I do like the choice of streetlights here as well as the use of interlocking brick for sidewalks and crosswalks. Overall though, the whole area just gives me theme park sorta vibes. Like it's trying to impersonate the industrial era rather than feeling like an authentic recreation of it.

Maybe it's just that the smoke stack and the water tower are a bit too on the nose for me, but obviously I won't pass judgement till its fully complete, and I do think the additions look high quality even if they feel a little inauthentic.

Of note one of the most recent concept drawings/renderings on the GSP group website (who is involved in the project) looks like this
Grand-Market-District-Feature.jpg


Which does have a significantly larger focus on the residential than the original proposal. That is not at all a bad thing in my mind though, as the mall is currently the start of the first phase of the Ion LRT and is where the second phase to Cambridge will extend from (the LRT phase 2 is actually visible in the above concept drawing)

There's also been lots of new development in the area, with the area across the road also being owned by CF and having a very large (relatively new) cineplex and indigo. A farm boy and a
chick-fil-a. There are also other residential proposals in the nearby area including Vierra Village and Elevate Condos.

Somewhat older article from the CBC for further reading

 

AlbertC

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Lol I remember this mall now. A friend and I from UW back in the day took the bus all across the two cities to buy flip flops (slippers) at the Wal-Mart here. This was before they opened the one closer to the campus at Bridgeport & Weber in Waterloo.
 

Ottawan

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Glad some of the old facade was preserved. Preserving that would be far more authentic than the pastiche industrial vibe. The overall use of brick is nice, but the amusement park water tower and smokestack are too much.
 

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