A Major Challenge for the Champlain Mall

A Major Challenge for the Champlain Mall

Il sera possible de se faire photographier sur le pont des amoureux de Paris au Mail Champlain.

Several stores have recently decided to migrate to Quartier DIX30, just like Zara did last April. The time has come to ponder the evolution of the business industry in Brossard.

The list of chain stores that have already fled from Champlain Mall is long: Clément, Garage, Addition-Elle, Bikini Village and, more recently, Zara.

Despite considerable efforts to retain its tenants, available rental space in Champlain Mall is multiplying.

Five stores and two kiosks are currently vacant and the imminent closure of Ailes de la mode will clear out another large area.

According to Benoit Duguay, a management professor at UQÀM, the prestige of Quartier DIX30 is alluring for fashion banners.

“Champlain Mall is almost 40 years old with an old-fashioned formula whereas DIX30 is flourishing. There are many prestigious banners, which inevitably creates a pole around which other stores want to gravitate,” explains the professor, who believes that the Royalmount project will have the same effect across the bridge.

Time to Transform the Commercial Offer

Traditional shopping centers must undergo a transformation according to Benoit Duguay. “Shopping is now fun. The commercial offer is often centered on entertainment with cafés, bars, movie theatres and more.”

Champlain Mall however has spared no efforts in recent years to bring in clientele. Computers were set up in the halls and the food court was completely restored.

The professor believes that the mall’s management should concentrate on clientele close by. “Consumers who live far away will not go to the Champlain Mall and it must therefore concentrate on convenience type services. It can renew itself but will never succeed in levelling the playing field with DIX30.”

More Services

One viable solution would be to improve the services, which would attract customers more regularly to the shopping mall on Taschereau Boulevard. In addition to the banks, dentists, hair stylists and opticians that are already there, a grocery store, for example, could make the Champlain Mall a weekly, if not daily, destination.

“Ideally, the mall could attract a useful store such as a grocery store, Canadian Tire or Walmart. Unfortunately for the Champlain Mall, such businesses already have a home within its perimeter,” specifies Benoit Duguay.

A health clinic, like the one at Rockland, could be another option to consider, according to the professor. He concludes however that this type of shopping center’s glory days are gone.

Despite several attempts, management of Champlain Mall did not return our calls to comment the issue.

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