New Metro supermarket to open at Windsor's former Target location

Friday, August 5, 2016

The Windsor Star/Dalson Chen

Windsorites will soon be able to buy groceries at the Devonshire Mall.

Canadian supermarket chain Metro Grocers confirmed on Thursday that the rumours are true: A new grocery store is being built at the former Target location at 3100 Howard Ave.

“To clarify, a Metro store is planned for the location — we just do not have an opening date at this point,” said Metro spokesman Mark Bernhardt.

Construction firm Fortis Group began demolition work on the site earlier this week — using heavy equipment to take down a wall section of the 120,000-square-foot store space.

According to a City of Windsor building department report, the $1.5-million transformation project includes interior renovations and installation of four new loading bays.

The site was a Zellers store for almost 20 years until it was taken over by Target in 2012 as part of an attempt to grow the Target chain into Canada.

Target Canada’s Windsor location opened with much fanfare in March 2013 — only to close its doors two years later when Target abruptly aborted all of its Canadian expansion efforts.

Devonshire Mall has not had a supermarket with meat and produce since September 1997, when A&P Canada left the shopping centre due to lack of business.

Metro Inc. — the third largest supermarket chain in the country — acquired A&P Canada in 2005, and converted all A&P stores to the Metro name in 2008.

Metro also owns Food Basics.

Prior to A&P Canada at the Devonshire Mall, the mall had Miracle Ultra Mart — which used to occupy the part of the mall that is now Chapters bookstore. A&P Canada acquired all Miracle Food Mart properties in 1989.

Once the new Metro location is complete, the Devonshire Mall will be in direct competition for grocery shoppers with the Walmart Supercentre at 3120 Dougall Ave. — less than three kilometres away.

It’s not yet known what hours the mall’s Metro store will keep. The Metro store at 3663 Tecumseh Rd. E. is open 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

The Metro stores at 2750 Tecumseh Rd. W. and 6740 Wyandotte St. E. are open from 7 a.m. to 11 p.m.