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Towered

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Thanks for the depressing tour of what was once a fun destination mall. There is no way back for this place whatsoever. Sepsis has set in. I used to love this place so much growing up. My parents let me run around for hours in the jungle gym part of the Fantasy Fair while they'd go and browse all the boring (to a 10 year old!) stores, after which they'd pick me up and then let me pick out a few of the latest He-Man or G.I. Joe figures missing from my collection at either the small toy store within the Fantasy Fair or at the much larger Toy City (where the Buk Barn is now). Oh and some comics at Games-A-Lot. Great times...
 

Justin Ziadeh

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Thanks for the depressing tour of what was once a fun destination mall. There is no way back for this place whatsoever. Sepsis has set in. I used to love this place so much growing up. My parents let me run around for hours in the jungle gym part of the Fantasy Fair while they'd go and browse all the boring (to a 10 year old!) stores, after which they'd pick me up and then let me pick out a few of the latest He-Man or G.I. Joe figures missing from my collection at either the small toy store within the Fantasy Fair or at the much larger Toy City (where the Buk Barn is now). Oh and some comics at Games-A-Lot. Great times...

Over 10 years ago, I remember another short-lived comic shop that was on the upper level close to Hakim Optical. It was a hobby shop, more or less but didn't last long.
 

Justin Ziadeh

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A few leftover photos from my last visit to the Woodbine Centre.

1627571495016.png


Front hallway, lower level to the right. Not quite Sportchek.

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You could visit an art gallery. Or...just stand in front of the elevator on the lower level.

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The liquidation across the street has a new sign. Usually, the Clearance Warehouse has good deals on cookware.

Other observations:

Shop A Lot is in an even-worse state now. No more shelves with items neatly organized. Just boxes on top of boxes.
Sadly, the expired soda was nowhere to be seen. I'm guessing the store will be gutted soon.

The liquidations taking up for Hudson's and Sears are still open.

Remember The General Store (towards Hudson's Bay, I think)? It's another liquidation that sells Christmas decorations
now, if I recall.
 
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gabe

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Thanks for the depressing tour of what was once a fun destination mall. There is no way back for this place whatsoever. Sepsis has set in. I used to love this place so much growing up. My parents let me run around for hours in the jungle gym part of the Fantasy Fair while they'd go and browse all the boring (to a 10 year old!) stores, after which they'd pick me up and then let me pick out a few of the latest He-Man or G.I. Joe figures missing from my collection at either the small toy store within the Fantasy Fair or at the much larger Toy City (where the Buk Barn is now). Oh and some comics at Games-A-Lot. Great times...

Hard to believe once upon a time it was a destination mall. I remember growing up, my cousins visiting from Hamilton, always wanted to hit up Woodbine Mall. The teens went shopping and us younger kids went to Fantasy Fair. Everyone was happy.

I haven't been to the mall in over 10 years. These pics are depressing. Looks like some dead mall you would see in Syracuse or someplace in the rust belt. Not in a city with millions of people like Toronto.
 

Richard White

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Hard to believe once upon a time it was a destination mall. I remember growing up, my cousins visiting from Hamilton, always wanted to hit up Woodbine Mall. The teens went shopping and us younger kids went to Fantasy Fair. Everyone was happy.

I haven't been to the mall in over 10 years. These pics are depressing. Looks like some dead mall you would see in Syracuse or someplace in the rust belt. Not in a city with millions of people like Toronto.

The problem is that the mall is in an obscure corner of the city that not many people travel to. People would rather go to Yorkdale or Square One than Woodbine.
 

swigg

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A real shame. I too used to go there as a kid and teenager, when there were stores worth visiting. After CF sold it the mall plummeted. I wonder if it'll revitalize with the development next door?
 

Towered

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Hard to believe once upon a time it was a destination mall. I remember growing up, my cousins visiting from Hamilton, always wanted to hit up Woodbine Mall. The teens went shopping and us younger kids went to Fantasy Fair. Everyone was happy.

I haven't been to the mall in over 10 years. These pics are depressing. Looks like some dead mall you would see in Syracuse or someplace in the rust belt. Not in a city with millions of people like Toronto.

Seriously. My family's go-to destination mall when I was very young was Sherway Gardens, but once Woodbine opened it totally overshadowed Sherway for a long time.
 

Transportfan

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The problem is that the mall is in an obscure corner of the city that not many people travel to. People would rather go to Yorkdale or Square One than Woodbine.

I don't think it was that, as there was still lots of population and traffic in the area. I think the location was wrong for it to be long term destination mall with Rexdale being an old-school area with an old demographic (I lived there and that was already starting to happen by the mid-80s), not a newer suburb like Erin Mills with lots of families. I always thought it was an odd place to build that mall. I'm particularly surprised Fantasy Fair was ever successful.
 
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junctionist

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All of the most successful malls in the GTA draw people from far outside their local neighbourhoods, and it's usually a bit of a trip. I don't think this mall was well managed. They didn't go after enough interesting destination retail and restaurants.
 

Justin Ziadeh

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Who's up for another trip down memory lane?

1628117539500.png

Credit: Eugenio Arcilesi

SAC stands for Student Activities Council. A program that was offered to students attending Humber College.

2015-12-19.jpg

Credit: infoaboutcompanies. com

In the early 2000's, Cineplex Odeon left the Woodbine Centre. In it's place came Rainbow Cinemas.

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Credit: Yelp.ca

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Credit: Foursquare.com

With Rainbow Cinemas came a new wall mural that was custom painted.

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Hallway opening day.

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Snackbar during construction.

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Snackbar opening day.

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Credit for the remaining photos goes to Film-Tech.com and Gordon McLeod for taking them. The full set can
be found here: http://www.film-tech.com/warehouse/pics/woodbine/woodbine.html
 
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telefann

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Hard to believe once upon a time it was a destination mall. I remember growing up, my cousins visiting from Hamilton, always wanted to hit up Woodbine Mall. The teens went shopping and us younger kids went to Fantasy Fair. Everyone was happy.

I haven't been to the mall in over 10 years. These pics are depressing. Looks like some dead mall you would see in Syracuse or someplace in the rust belt. Not in a city with millions of people like Toronto.
On a recent trip to Yorkdale, I came across a depressing promotional display for an "upcoming" Chinese restaurant that would "open in 2020" which was still not taken down. Mind you, we are talking about what's perhaps the premier shopping mecca in the GTA and if even Yorkdale isn't immune to the economic ravages of the pandemic, I can only imagine how utterly catastrophic things will get for failing lower-tier regional malls like Woodbine.
 

Justin Ziadeh

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Speaking of lower-tier:

a few days ago, I went to Albion Mall for the first time since the pandemic hit. The atmosphere just before closing reminded me of the
Woodbine Centre's current state. Vacant stores, sealed off areas, run-down atmosphere. A far cry from frequenting the mall in the early
90's when Kmart was still in operation.

The photos can be viewed in this thread:
https://urbantoronto.ca/forum/threads/the-albion-centre.31096/page-6
 

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