Simon Property Group, the largest shopping center developer in the U.S. and Calloway REIT, one of the largest real estate investment trusts in Canada are partnering in a planned 500,000-square-foot, 100-store, high-end retail outlet center in the Toronto suburb of Halton Hills.
Groundbreaking is planned for April 25. To be called Toronto Premium Outlets, the 50-50 joint venture says in a news release the multi-million-dollar project will be the first of its kind in Canada.
Simon is providing leasing, management and marketing services. SmartCentres of Toronto assisted the joint venture in obtaining permit approvals for the project.
An estimated development or construction cost wasn't disclosed. Construction is expected to take 16 months with a planned opening for summer 2013.
The undertaking is expected to create 500 fulltime and part-time jobs along with hundreds of local construction jobs.
Although Halton Hills itself has a permanent population of only 59,000, the joint venture is hoping to draw customers from a total Toronto metro population of about six million. Halton Hills' population has been steadily increasing since the town was created in 1974.
With Toronto Premium Outlets, John R. Klein, President of Simon's Premium Outlets division, sees "a tremendous opportunity to introduce our top merchants to the Canadian market."
Al Mawani, President and CEO of Calloway, says "the Canadian retail landscape is evolving and Toronto Premium Outlets will be the first of its kind in the country."
Adds Gary Carr, Halton Regional chairman: "Halton Region is the right location for a new commercial retail development of this nature. Businesses are choosing to locate in Halton due to both the quality infrastructure and high quality of life."
Simon Property Group's outlet portfolio comprises 70 Premium Outlet Centers, including 57 in the United States, one in Puerto Rico, eight in Japan, two in Korea and one in Mexico.
Premium Outlet Centers in the United States are located primarily in or near major metropolitan markets such as New York, Los Angeles, Boston and Chicago and visitor markets such as Orlando, Las Vegas and Palm Springs.
"Premium Outlets properties are distinguished by their unparalleled mix of leading designers and name brands selling direct to consumers at significant savings with each being an architecturally distinct village setting with charm and ambiance," according to the news release.
Indianapolis, IN-based Simon Property Group, Inc. currently owns or has an interest in 337 retail real estate properties in North America and Asia comprising 245 million square feet. The company also has a 29 percent interest in Klepierre, a publicly-traded French REIT with a portfolio of about 270 shopping centers in 13 countries in Europe.
Toronto-based Calloway says it has an enterprise value of about $6 billion. It owns and manages 25 million square feet in 127 value-oriented retail centers.
Privately -held SmartCentres says it has developed more than 200 shopping centers in communities located in all 10 Canadian provinces.