Thursday, May 4, 2017

The Opening of Outlet Collection Winnipeg

The crowd wound around the building before 9 AM
The Food Court entrance from the back of Outlet Collection
It seemed an impossible task that the $200 million Outlet Collection Winnipeg factory mall would open on May 3rd. Construction continued all this week and into the morning. IHOP and  McDonald's are all waiting to be completed just outside the mall. The Audi, Porsche dealerships are under construction and the Hilton Hotel is nearer completion.

The mall inside minus some notable exceptions is complete and looks fantastic. Some of the biggest outlets stores are all done including DSW, Nike, Under Armour and Saks OFF FIFTH.

The Food Court was the site of a opening ceremony hosted by Ace Burpee and featured the premier, the mayor and the builders of the mall Ivanhoe Cambridge.

Entertainment, food, models and many dignitaries were in every seat and standing to every side. Nearly 60 retail executives from Ivanhoe Cambridge were there to see the opening and and attend a 2 day business conference. Politicians of every stripe and media of all kinds were in the crowd.

Performers at the ceremony
The ceremony was not long. Ace Burpee acted as host and speeches were made by Premier Brain Pallister, Mayor Brian Bowman and President of Ivanhoe Cambridge Claude Sirois. They welcomed assembled crowd and the people outside.

General Manager of the mall, Dimitrios Cotsianis, announced that the mall would be giving $10,000 to a local charity. It would be up to mall patrons to decide who. he tanked all those who helped bring the mall to fruition. Nearly 2000 workers helped in those last days before the deadline to get things ready.

Premier Brian Pallister
Mayor Brian Bowmna
President Claude Sirois, Ivanhoe Cambridge
General Manager Dimitrios Cotsianis, Outlet Collection

While the speeches were happening, a train rolled through the back and parked behind. It was just a reminder of what the Seasons of Tuxedo site was just a few short years ago: a railyard. Also visible was the huge crowds snaking around the building including a lot of kids who otherwise should have been school. Police and heavy security along Kenaston and Sterling Lyon directed people into the packed mall.  Organizers estimated that at the opening, there might have been 4000 people at the doors.

Following the speeches, media was led to the door opening and people literally ran inside.

Crowd running in
It wasn't long before all the stores were packed to the rafters and traffic reports were saying the street was filled with cars and people

Some stores and restaurants in and outside the mall will open into the fall. Expect it to be busy for the next while!

Much of the photography by Matraisa Klippenstein. Thanks for her professional work that day.

No comments: