Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Shopper's Drug Mart Osborne Village

Shopper's Drug Mart in the Osborne Village

There was a brief mention in the newspaper and a blog post about this application by Shopper's Drug Mart and their expansion of their Osborne Village location on Roslyn Road.

The plan is to add 8,522 square feet to the present 10,048 square feet. This will change the store to a two floor format with few parking slots and a pedestrian access to the businesses behind it.

It is a good plan for a busy corner and a 24 hour store. Many people going to Shopper's now actually live close to the store and walk or bike to it. To this end, the store has said it will include bike racks for patrons.

More parking spaces is not always welcome. In this case, the increased commercial density and tips of the hat to pedestrians and people using bikes is a preferred option.

While the store expansion is a good thing, I hope the design is a little better than what is present now. By this I refer to the frosted windows. I believe the store should be much more open to the busy street than it is now. While I respect the need for privacy for the pharmacy, some of the rest of the store could stand to be visible through clear windows. I think this is an important feature for safety within the store as well as outside it. And given that the Osborne Village is increasingly a busy place 24 hours a day, it is good to show there is life in the building. Walking by the windows now is like walking past a blank wall.

Still, congratulations are in order to Shopper's for an approach that will make sense for the area. It will make the area even more attractive for people to live there.

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Marty said...

Must disagree John. I have heard from area residents who are VERY upset.

Unless the access from Roslyn is closed off, the increase in customer traffic will make that street going eastbound to Osborne an even worse parking lot than it already is.

It is at a standstill for many hours a day as cars creep northbound off the lot onto Roslyn to turn to osborne or Nassau.

mrchristian said...

Yes, compare Shopper's approach Safeway's 'take it (the big box suburban cookie cutter store) or leave it' from a few years back - they certainly have done their homeowrk on their expansion.

Certainly if it were an IKEA or Hortons in the burbs the city would be wetting itself to allow it to build. What will they do when an existing business in an established neighbourhood tries to expand without trying to rip down four houses ?!

Traffic is an i

One Man Committee said...

I use this Shoppers/Safeway fairly regularly and maybe I'm the odd man out on this one, but I don't find traffic to be a significant problem. I mean, it's busy so you can't just breeze through, but a "standstill" is really overstating things IMO.

For what it's worth, it's nice that SDM is making more intense use of its space. But my quibble is that the design is godawful. The existing store takes some of the worst late 1990s stucco big box design and adds to it. The second storey won't be on top of the existing building so much as it will be cantilevered over the parking lot. The end result won't be pretty.

Westender said...

As a former resident of the area (on Evergreen) I agree this is a positive development. I often used the Shopper's when I lived there and a bigger store with more offerings (especially given it is a 24-hour location) will further benefit the neighbourhood.

The traffic issue is overblown. Roslyn is not a through street and, yes, often requires waiting a few light cycles before turning onto Osborne; but 'parking lot' is a ridiculous characterization.

John Dobbin said...

I have been using a different computer since January and as such, I make a lot more typos. Hope to have my regular computer back in the next weeks.

My last reply should have read:

"Is it the Shopper's that is causing that much traffic or is it the amount of people cutting through to access other streets?

I agree that the issue of traffic on Roslyn needs to dealt with."

We'll have to see if the ultimate design is more friendly looking than the present one.

Anonymous said...

Part of the problem is that any traffic coming from the west on Stradbrook/Wellington that wants to get to Safeway obviously can't get there on River since it is one way. So, everyone has to go up Nassau to Roslyn and most cut through the SDM lot to get to Safeway instead of going to Osborne and south to River and back. Don't know how that could be fixed unless the back lane for the new Dennistoun development was extended into the Safeway lot (actually, that would really help).

Anyway, I live on east Roslyn and have no problem with the addition. Then again, I always walk there.

gary said...

I see the loss of two unique Village businesses for more of the same as a sad day for the village. What will Shoppers offer that is not readily available. If i wanted to live next to a am i would already be doing that but i chose the Village because of some of these unique opportunities.

gary said...

I feel that the loss of two unique Village businesses will be significant. do we really need more of the same in terms of box store shopping. What are they offering that is not readily available at Safeway and the present Shoppers?

Brian said...


Please help stop the expansion of Shoppers Drug Mart. If it goes through it will be costing people their jobs. I'm the son of the owner of Vi-Ann and I want you guys to really think if this expansion is really necessary. My father doesn't own the building of his restaurant, so potentially he can lose everything without any say. As Gary said, what can a bigger Shoppers Drug Mart offer that's not readily available at Safeway and the present Shoppers?