5 Things That Could Replace the Movie Theatre in Square One in Mississauga


Square One is no stranger to grand-scale expansion projects that fundamentally alter the look, feel and appeal of the city’s biggest--and best known--shopping centre.

The shopping centre, which, according to a recent Retail Council of Canada report, attracts 23 million visitors a year, just completed it massive west expansion project. Square One said the $580 million redevelopment is one of the most ambitious projects of its kind in North America, and it has brought diners Uniqlo, Indigo, The Rec Room and the Food District (which officially opened on April 1).

But while the former Target area is now full of brand new—and exciting—stores and recreational hotspots, there's another part of the mall that's due for some redevelopment.

And that part is the now vacant movie theatre.

So, what should go in it? Here are five things we think would be perfect for the space.

*Note, none of these organizations have indicated that they're coming to the movie theatre location. This is just our "wishlist."

5) A Boutique and Urbane Fitness Company

With fancy condos coming to town, the young professionals will need a fancy gym to work out in—something that will complement the nearby Orange Theory. While some people might think a boutique fitness facility like Barry's Bootcamp or SoulCycle would do better in Lorne Park or Port Credit, they're probably mistaken. Residents will likely be interested in a more luxurious workout that's tightly focused on one particular exercise (such as spinning, in the case of SoulCycle). While the space is likely too large for just one SoulCycle or Barry's studio, parts of it could certainly be used to house a unique (and boutique!) workout space.  

4) An Aquarium

A few days ago, we made a very funny April Fool's Day joke about Mississauga welcoming the tallest towers in North America. We said one of the towers would house an aquarium filled with beautiful tiger sharks and while we know that the development we invented isn't happening (unless we're clairvoyant and it is), we actually think the City Centre area could use an aquarium. In Toronto, Ripley's Aquarium is just a two minute walk from The Rec Room, so recreating that dynamic might work in Mississauga. Also, who doesn't love sharks? 

3) A Brewery

Mississauga has done a lot to drag some of its more conservative, urban sprawl-loving residents kicking and screaming into the 21st century. Pursuing an LRT and moving forward on vast and ambitious redevelopment projects (Inspiration Lakeview, for example), the city has shown it's not afraid to grow up rather than out, but if it wants to capture that big city feel, it needs a few more breweries. While Old Credit Brewing Co. has been serving beer fans for sometime and Stonehooker is about to open, City Centre—especially with more condos coming—could use an on-trend brewpub that pairs its housemade brews with Edison bulbs, rustic wooden furniture, a quirky mascot and truffle fries.

2) Sonic Boom

While we don’t believe the popular independent record store that occupies a generous piece of real-estate on Spadina in TO has declared any plans to expand westward, we think we’d be a good choice for another location. For those who don't know, Sonic Boom is an Indigo-sized music store offering an absolutely staggering selection of vinyl, CDs and DVDs. It's the perfect destination for shoppers who long to return to a time when music was more substantial and collectible than it is now. A time where you could hold a record in your hands and interact with the medium in a more intimate, physical way. Mississauga seems to like vinyl, as Ric’s Recollections and Archtop Cafe have both carved out niches for themselves in Port Credit. The city has also taken to the relatively new Urban Outfitters location in Square One. Perhaps a Sonic Boom will appeal to all those young professionals moving into those brand spankin’ new Square One condos?

1) Cheesecake Factory

We've actually asked Square One about the possibility of them landing this coveted gem and while they have not said it's coming to the movie theatre space, we feel in our hearts that it is. In fact, after a visit to the Yorkdale Cheesecake Factory location (there are still lineups, by the by) around Christmas, I had a dream that it opened in Square One. If it comes, few people will be surprised. The American restaurant chain appears to be having a good run in an Oxford Properties shopping centre (Yorkdale), so perhaps the seemingly positive relationship will lead to more Cheesecake Factory investment in Oxford shopping meccas. Square One has the density and the crowd to support the resto, and it would draw crowds from all over the west-end GTA (Brampton, Oakville, Milton, Halton Hills, Burlington, etc). While we truly know nothing, we just as truly believe it's going to happen.

Photo courtesy of Square One’s official Facebook page

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