Several West End businesses and shops have been successively closing down on the 1600 block of Davie Street to make way for a new development, with the last remaining store to close next week.
The businesses are being replaced by two new multi-family residential towers (21- and 23-storeys), with 319 market rental units, three commercial retail units, a grocery store (located in the complex's podium), and two-and-a-half levels of parking.
A development application, filed by Henriquez Partners Architects for Westbank Projects Corporation, was submitted on December 23, and an open house for the development plans was held on February 29.
One of the last businesses to shut down will be Safeway English Bay, which will close its doors at 6 p.m. on 1641 Davie Street (at Cardero Street) on August 31.
Sobeys West communications director Keri Scobie informed the Georgia Straight by phone that the closure is only temporary as the grocery store will be relocated within the new premises. (Sobeys acquired Safeway stores in western Canada in 2013.)
Scobie said that they do not have any details yet about the new location, such as when it will be ready to open or what size it will be. The current location is 32,765 square feet and opened in 1996.
She said the company will also work with unions to relocate the store's 102 employees.
Scobie added that while Safeway Pharmacy customers can use their next nearest location at 1766 Robson Street (at Denman Street) where their files will be available, they are also planning to find a temproary pharmacy location during construction that is closer to the English Bay site. Customers will be informed about where the interim pharmacy will be once the new location is determined.
Other alternate grocery stores in the area include No Frills (1030 Denman Street) in the Denman Place Mall, Your Independent Grocery (1255 Davie Street), Golden Choice Market (1715 Davie Street), or Kin's Market (150–1160 Davie Street or 1057 Denman Street). Earth Market (1722 Davie Street) shut down in July.
Businesses at the Bidwell Street end of the Davie Street block, such as Mac's, already closed or relocated and the buildings have been demolished.
Bosley's Pet Food Plus relocated from 1683 Davie Street to 1005 Denman Street (at Nelson Street).
The B.C. Liquor Store located at 1655 Davie Street shut down on August 23.
According to B.C. Liquor Distribution Branch communication officer Karen Shum, the store opened around 1973 and was about 5,200 square feet.
Shum said that although they have not been informed how long the redevelopment will last, they intend to keep a liquor store location in the area once the redevelopment is complete.
She added that the seven employees who worked at the store will be relocated to other locations.
The closest alternate B.C. Liquor Store locations are at 1155 Bute Street (at Davie Street) and 1716 Robson Street (at Bidwell Street).