Andrew Pakula's Commentary

Posted March 29, 2006 (User Submitted)

Honeydale Mall is a small mall located in south-west Etobicoke (near Toronto), Ontario on Dundas St. West near HWY 427. The road location has a high amount of traffic and gradually over the years many businesses have filled in the remaining few spaces along this stretch of road. By all means this area is booming with business however Honeydale Mall is an exception to all the success of the area.

Many years ago this mall once housed a Woolco Department store which was fairly popular. Back when I was a small kid I remembered my parents would shop frequently there. That would have been back in the early to mid 1980’s, those were the better years for this mall. During that time the mall interior was well maintained and decent stores inhabited the inside. At one time I think there may have been additional stores along the side of the No Frills discount grocery store however at some point if I remember correctly the grocery store swallowed up those stores along that side.

Around 1995 Walmart bought all of the Woolco stores in Canada looking for base to start operations in Canada. So for many years the Walmart store continued to be the main tenant of this Honeydale Mall however the mall’s decline had already begun. About 2 years ago Walmart closed their store at this location and replaced it with a super store closer to the hugely successful Sherway Mall where a number of other big box stores were opening. This only plunged this small old mall into further neglect.

For the last little while there was a flee market taking up the space of the old Walmart and now it looks like it is being converted into an outlet furniture store for the Bay department store. No Frills a discount grocery store occupies the other side and the only two other major tenants are the Bank of Montreal and Golden Griddle a family restaurant, all of which have outer access.

Inside the mall today looks like a sad story of neglect and abandonment. All of the interior stores are now empty and vacant. It looks like the last stores to be open in their places were dollar stores but even they are long gone now. Strangely one of the empty stores is left open advertising that there is a public washroom in the back. Walking through the empty old store is creepy but it eventually leads to a back room somewhere with a toilet. Seems like the perfect location for some pervert to hang out around, I wouldn’t recommend anyone walking back there no matter how bad you might have to go. Why they would leave something open like this is beyond me.

If you were to visit the mall today the mall’s sign along the road is a first clue that things are not right here however you will notice that parking is still fairly crowded and full. This is because the No Frills discount grocery store is hugely popular. The Golden Griddle family restaurant which has been there for over 20 years has also endured and is actually in the best shape compared to all other stores in Honeydale. The Bank of Montreal looks dated and it looks to me that they are beginning to scale back operations at this branch meaning they will probably close it eventually some time soon.

I had not stepped foot in this mall for several years so it was a little hard to see how badly in shape this mall was in. The old corner greasy spoon restaurant which I could remember getting food from when I was a kid looks like it has been abandoned for quite some time, just left there as a relic. The only store to inhabit the inner mall now is a small Government education centre.

Whoever owns the mall today it is obvious they care little about it. It just looks like they have given up on it and just content with the existing tenants. There doesn’t appear to be any attempt to perform even basic maintenance on this mall so you can assume that renovating any part of the interior part of the mall and redeveloping it is not in their plans. I suspect that eventually within the next 5-10 years or so this mall will be demolished and cleared away. The land is worth too much money to leave it being occupied by a decaying mall with discount stores.

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