It appears there is finally real progress to report on Griesbach’s long awaited commercial development.
The architectural guidelines for the Griesbach Square were shared publicly with residents for the first time at the Griesbach Community League AGM on March 10th. GCL President Brad Tilley made the presentation, as Brentwood Developments’ representative was unable to attend.
Tilley stated the community league is impressed with the overall design direction for Griesbach Square, based on higher-end architectural guidelines that appear to complement the aesthetic of our community. This includes:
- Stone and brick frontages with ample windows to provide the feel of a premium shopping experience
- Patios and outdoor seating for an inviting setting
- Pedestrian friendly walkways with plaques and design features that continue the theme of recognizing our military heritage
- Trees and benches on sidewalks and boulevards
- What appears to be a practical traffic flow and adequate parking
The site plan shows a mix of business: from restaurants and shops to a future medical centre. While a bank appears in the rendering, this may or may not happen.
(Click link below to view the complete Architectural Guideline package):
Griesbach Square Commercial Architectural Guidelines 2015-02-02 web
The only tenant that has been announced to date is Shoppers Drug Mart, which will occupy building #1, which is going up rapidly along Griesbach Parade. They are nearing the completion of contract negotiations with several other tenants – so further announcements are imminent. The Shoppers Drug Mart is scheduled to open late 2016 and will replace the Rosslyn location with a more modern design.
The second building you see going up is Building #2, which will house several business and may include a restaurant/coffee shop. It is expected to open late 2016/ early 2017. A third building (building #9) is in the design stage, with construction expected to begin shortly. No timelines have yet been set for the other buildings outlined in the site plan.
Sobeys: The Elephant in the Room
Several resident inquired about the status of the land that was sold to Sobeys, which planned to build an anchor store in Griesbach – before plans were put on the shelf when Sobeys bought Safeway, resulting in two stores kitty corner. Not only does Sobeys still own the land, restrictive covenants in the contract specifically tie the hands of the current developer to bring in other tenants that might be deemed “in competition” with a Sobeys store.
Councillor Bev Esslinger said the City is looking to see if there is a legal way to get out of the contract due the change in circumstance since it was negotiated. In the meantime, it appears it is a matter of sit and wait.
Progress at last:
For long time residents who have been awaiting development for over a decade, the latest announcements are refreshing news. We hope Griesbach Square will attract the types of businesses and services that will serve the wants needs of residents and make the commercial area successful for years to come.