Greater Trail residents can breathe easier that a rash of closures in downtown Trail are not spreading toward Waneta.
Though Extra Foods will be replaced with a No Frills at a date to be announced this year, talk of Zellers at Waneta Plaza shutting down was no more than a rumour, according to Tiffany Bourre, HBC external communications manager.
“It continues to operate business as usual, as a Zellers store,” she said.
The store is among the 84 facilities that were not acquired by Target and the Hudson’s Bay Company is currently reviewing its options for these remaining locations.
Meanwhile, a stroll down Cedar Avenue would suggest Trail is becoming a ghost town.
Your Dollar Store closed down this month, Trail Movies and More has relocated to a smaller storefront (1330 Bay Avenue) – leaving its former location beside Canadian 2 for 1 Pizza empty – and Fields will soon look more like its former competitor across the street, Liquidation World, which shut down in 2010.
Though some of the movement has painted a grim picture, Marla Hillton, owner of Trail Movies and More said operating a private business in Trail is still viable.
“Some of these corporate companies and businesses make some pretty poor decisions. This is a wise decision for us to try to reduce expenses to be able to survive,” she said.
“If you have to pay big rent and you have a couple of slow months, then you have trouble making your bills.”
There is much opportunity to come for the city, if you ask Trail Mayor Dieter Bogs.
The Downtown Opportunities and Action Planning Committee was established to find solutions that will result in economic revitalization and will soon share recommendations made by consultant MMM Group Limited, which was hired to develop a renewal plan.
The committee has received a draft of the report and expects a final version within the next couple of weeks, which should be made public by the end of March.
“I’m hoping that we’ll be in a position within the next months to also make some announcement that will counter balance the current (health) of the downtown,” said Bogs, hinting at a project on the horizon.