The President of the company hoping to turn the Saskatoon City Yards into a retail and residential development says a lot of work still lies ahead.
Jeff Drexel of Arbutus Properties told the City’s Committee on Planning, Development and Community Services their vision is to create a centrepiece that will attract people to the northern area of downtown.
He said it’s a great retail spot that could be turned into a lifestyle centre that will not threaten current businesses.
“I think this will enhance everything downtown, I really think that adding to the viability of the downtown is adding more retail and more residential and that only enhances the surrounding retail, it ussally doesn’t hurt it, it usually improves the viability of the rest of the retail around it,” said Drexel.
The complex calls for rental as well as residential units for sale as well as a Grocery Store in the retail plan.
Drexel asked the committee to recommend negotiations begin on the 22-acre property, but the committee doesn’t have the authority.
Mayor Charlie Clark called for a quick but thorough review of the proposal by administration.
Drexel had hoped to soon begin bargaining but feels the process is moving in the right direction
” I would have hoped for a more definitive answer, but I was pleased at least they are moving in the right direction and I hope they will come (with a response) as positive,” said Drexel.
The company hopes to put together a detiled plan following six a month review period.
Drexel said the City would have to contribute financially to make the project economically viable.