A five-star hotel, a flagship liquor mart, a bank and a law firm will anchor the four towers of True North Square.
True North Sports and Entertainment unveiled the first major details of what will go inside its $400 million major development Wednesday morning.
Thompson Dorfman Sweatman, Scotiabank, a large Manitoba Liquor Mart, and Sutton Place Hotel have committed to space in the new buildings.
Scotiabank will be moving its prairie head office into the main tower at 242 Hargrave Street, which will be formally known as “Scotiabank Tower at True North Square.”
The bank says it will still keep its location at Portage and Main.
Keith LaBossiere of Thompson Dorfman Sweatman says they will move into the top three floors of that tower, which is expected to open in 2018.
“(The) law office that is unlike any law office you have ever seen before. I’ll tell you what – July 2018 can’t come soon enough.”
Tower Two will be, in Ludlow’s words “a 24 storey architectural icon” at the northwest corner of Graham and Carlton.
It will feature 200,000 square feet of plaza, a second floor restaurant and retail space, boutique offices, and top floor residences with exclusive roof top amenities. It is scheduled for completion in early 2019.
Manitoba Liquor and Lotteries will also open a flagship 50,000 square foot Liquor Mart inside.
To put that in perspective, their biggest store now is the one at Grant Park Shopping Centre. That’s about 15,500 square feet.
Liquor and Lotteries CEO John Stinson says it will offer a lot more than the existing Liquor Marts around town.
“Where people can come for a destination shopping experience, can learn about the products, can do tastings, can take courses, can learn about food pairings,” he says. “One of our challenges has always been when we create liquor marts, we’re trying to squeeze them into a place that’s existing in another retail location.”
Stinson says they want to work with private wine stores and restaurant associations. He also expects a special wine area, craft beer, maybe even a whisky store within the store.
The new “flagship” location is probably still three or four years away from opening.
Towers 3 and 4
The five-star Sutton Place Hotel will take up these two towers at 220 Carleton Street.
One of the towers will have 27 storeys of hotel space with 275 hotel rooms.
The other tower will have 130 residential units inside.
The hotel will feature a roof-top garden and a restaurant on the ground flood. It will also have an indoor pool, whirlpool, fitness centre, spa and conference facilities.
Complementing the entire project will be a public plaza and parkway along Carlton that is expected to be a major gathering place in downtown Winnipeg.
The plaza, unveiled in January, will be a two-acre outdoor space nestled in between the towers.
The city and province are committing $17.6 million through tax increment financing to fund the development of the space.
Some of the options for the plaza include outdoor concerts, movies, beach volleyball and a food truck festival in the summer. In the winter, you could go skating, curling, take a drink at the ice bar, or explore the Christmas Village. There will also be space for a game day party when the Jets play across the street at MTS Centre.
True North’s Jim Ludlow said it will be similar to other major public plazas in other cities.
“If you were in Chicago and went to Millennium Park or Portland and went to Director’s Park, it’s a place where you can come and sit and reflect. There will be some retail spaces. It will be a bit like taking some elements of the Forks into a commercial context,” he said.
The plaza is expected to open in 2018.
See more details on True North Square here.