The Bay leaves Laurier Quebec

La Baie leaves Laurier Québec

DAY

The La Baie store at the Laurier Québec shopping center will close its doors for good next September, confirmed the parent company, which is launching a major liquidation sale.

The retail loses another major player in the Quebec region.

“After careful consideration, Hudson's Bay has made the decision to close its Place Laurier [sic] branch on September 11, 2022. Hudson's Bay will continue to serve the community with a smooth experience both at the Galeries de la Capitale and on the labaie.com site,” said Tiffany Bourré, spokesperson.

According to her, this closure was announced in 2021, but we seems to have flown under the radar, to the general surprise of customers who heard the news on the spot in the last few days. 

Even before the pandemic, Hudson's Bay was exploring the possibility of closing many stores across the country. In the case of Laurier Québec, Ms Bourré claims that the announcement was made “internally”, without any public broadcast accompanying it.

A single store

Unlike the Galeries de la Capitale store, which was redone from scratch, the Laurier Québec store had not undergone major renovations in recent years. This store was inaugurated in the early 1980s during the expansion of the shopping center. The store occupies two floors for a total area of ​​150,000 square feet. This means that there will only be one La Baie store left in the Quebec region. The Place Fleur de Lys store closed in 2017. 

“While these decisions are difficult, they are good for our business. They reflect customer preferences and our vision for the future,” Ms. Bourré added in an email.

“We are committed to treating each associate with respect and fairness throughout our this process. All eligible associates will be provided with appropriate termination packages and transfer opportunities will be explored where possible,” she said.

In In this context, the closing sale took place on July 2. 

The employees met on site, mostly women, preferred not to comment on the situation.

Disappointment among customers

“It disappoints me, even if I don't always buy. Me, I like big-box stores,” confided Ginette Sauvageau, a loyal customer.

For Carole Larochelle, also a regular at the place, this is a loss. 

“It surprises me a lot. I was aware of the difficulties they had, but this morning [yesterday], hearing that, I was very surprised despite everything. It's a department store and I found it useful because it's close to my house. I liked coming here. I found things. Times change a lot and that has not finished changing,” added Ms. Larochelle. , Ivanhoé Cambridge, owner of Laurier Québec, was studying the possibility of realizing a mixed-use real estate development of 1,000 to 1,500 units annexed to the shopping center. We were talking about a project worth around $100 million, carried out over several years. 

“ As a real estate investor, we are always on the lookout for projects that could have a positive impact on our assets and surrounding communities. As for Laurier Québec, feasibility studies for various densification scenarios for this high-potential sector are still underway,” said Gabrielle Meloche, Senior Public Affairs Advisor for Ivanhoé Cambridge.