Metropolis at Metrotown
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Metropolis at Metrotown's entrance facing Central Boulevard and the SkyTrain station.
|Location||Burnaby, British Columbia, Canada|
|Developer||Ivanhoe Cambridge / Cal Investments|
|No. of stores and services||450|
|No. of anchor tenants||16|
|Total retail floor area||1,783,005 sq ft (165,646.6 m2)|
|No. of floors||3|
|Public transit access||Metrotown Station|
Metropolis at Metrotown (commonly referred to as simply Metrotown or Metro, and formerly known as Metrotown Centre, or Eaton Centre Metrotown) is a shopping mall complex in Burnaby, British Columbia, Canada. With over 450 shops and services, the anchors are Hudson's Bay, Sears, Target, Toys "R" Us, T & T Supermarket, Sport Chek/Atmosphere, Chapters, Forever 21, H&M, Home Outfitters, Old Navy, Real Canadian Superstore, Urban Behavior, Winners/HomeSense, Zara and Cineplex. It is the largest mall in British Columbia, and the 2nd largest in Canada. The mall is connected by a skyway to the Metrotown Station on the SkyTrain rapid transit system. Two office buildings are part of the complex, with a third under construction.
Metrotown Centre first opened in 1986 — attached to a new Hudson's Bay Company department store, and a Sears Canada department store operating at that location since the early 1950s — on land that had previously held warehouses, other light industry, and a supermarket, and which was adjacent to the former Vancouver Interurban Rail line (now the route for the SkyTrain). The mall has been expanded and renovated several times, and has contributed to the rapid growth of the area's population.
Two additional shopping centres were constructed adjacent to the original Metrotown—Eaton Centre and Station Square. These three different malls were connected by skyways, as were the two office towers known as the Metrotowers. In 1998, Eaton Centre added Metropolis, a collection of stores aimed towards younger shoppers, including SilverCity, Claire's, Off The Wall and CHQ (replacing the Playdium), as well as several Asian-themed businesses. For teens there is Icing, Old Navy, and HMV.
The name Metropolis came to apply to Eaton Centre once its main tenant, Eaton's, shut down. In 2005, a major expansion project ended that saw Metrotown and Metropolis combined into one single megamall, as well as the addition of many new stores and Western Canada's largest food court. Following this expansion, the two malls became one entity under the name "Metropolis at Metrotown". Station Square, however, has not been included in this combined megamall, and as of 2013, it is under the process of being demolished to make way for a new high-rise complex, to be named after Station Square.
Metrotower III, located immediately south of the other two office towers, began construction in the summer of 2008. It had been on hold, but as of 2012 is again under construction.
The word "Metrotown" has now come to apply to the parts of Burnaby that surround the mall, particularly the commercial and residential areas for several kilometres east and west along Kingsway. Previously, this neighbourhood was referred to as West Burnaby. Since the mid-1980s, the neighbourhood has undergone extreme "densification", thus reflecting the official community plan for the area, created and adjusted in anticipation of SkyTrain construction. Some businesses across Burnaby's nearby western municipal border, in the City of Vancouver's Collingwood neighbourhood, use the Metrotown name, even though most residents would consider them outside of the region covered by the term.
The Metrotown neighbourhood is also home to a number of smaller shopping centres. Although connected to Metropolis by a skyway, Station Square has remained separately managed. Another shopping centre, the Asian-themed Crystal Mall, opened near Metropolis in 2000, although it has no direct connection. Old Orchard Centre, is yet another shopping centre located nearby that is considered part of the Metrotown district. Old Orchard Centre predates all of the other shopping centres in the neighbourhood and is a strip mall, as opposed to an enclosed mall.