Hudson's Bay Centre

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2 Bloor East
(previously: Hudson's Bay Centre)
HBC Tower.JPG
The Hudson's Bay Centre in Downtown Toronto
General information
Address2 Bloor Street East
Toronto, Ontario
M4W 1A8
Coordinates43°40′15″N 79°23′12″W / 43.670724°N 79.386606°W / 43.670724; -79.386606Coordinates: 43°40′15″N 79°23′12″W / 43.670724°N 79.386606°W / 43.670724; -79.386606
Construction started1972
Completed1974
Height
Roof135 m (443 ft)
Technical details
Floor count35
Floor area535,000 sq ft (49,700 m2)

2 Bloor East[1][2] is an office and retail complex in Toronto, Ontario, Canada, formerly known as the Hudson's Bay Centre. It is located in Downtown Toronto at the intersection of Yonge Street and Bloor Street at the east end of the Mink Mile. Brookfield Properties owns and operates the centre. The centre is composed of a 35-storey office tower and a retail concourse. From its opening in 1974 until 2022 it had a Hudson's Bay department store as its anchor store.

Description[edit]

The tower stands at 135 metres in height. It contains 35 floors and 535,000-square-foot (49,700 m2), and its address 2 Bloor Street East, at the northeast corner of the intersection of Yonge and Bloor Streets. The extensive retail concourse was anchored by a flagship store of Hudson's Bay/The Bay (known as the "Toronto, on Bloor Street" store at 44 Bloor Street East, the main brand of HBC. The mall contains over 45 specialty shops, boutiques, services and eateries. The complex also includes the Marriott Hotel, an RBC Royal Bank branch, a Jack Astor's Bar and Grill, apartments, and condominiums.

The centre has space for 1,200 cars in its underground and above-ground parking lots, multiple entrances located on Yonge, Bloor Streets, Park Road and Asquith Avenue and is surrounded by several parks and the Yorkville neighborhood which is known for upscale shopping.

The building is connected to the Bloor–Yonge subway station, the TTC's major east-west/north-south transfer point. There are also below-grade connections to the Holt Renfrew Centre and Cumberland Terrace, which continues westward to 60 Bloor Street West and Manulife Centre. The pedestrian tunnels stretches along Bloor Street West to the Bay subway station, making this Toronto's largest underground network after PATH.

History[edit]

Yonge and Bloor department store before closure on March, 2022

Completed in 1974, the International style office skyscraper has served as the headquarters for the retailer Hudson's Bay Company (HBC). The company remained the main tenant until 2022, although the company relocated its head office to the Simpson Tower in 1978. The department store opened with the tower and was the first location of The Bay within the former city of Toronto.[3] It overtook the Winnipeg location to become the flagship branch of The Bay (despite being actually smaller in size than the former) and maintained this distinction until the conversion in 1991 of the larger Simpsons store also located in Toronto.[4]

In 2013, it was announced that the 342,000 square foot Hudson's Bay/The Bay store could undergo a CA$100 million renovation to become the Canadian flagship location of Saks Fifth Avenue, the American luxury department store chain which is now also owned by Hudson's Bay Company (HBC).[5] However, it was subsequently announced that HBC would instead be renovating its flagship Hudson's Bay store at Yonge and Queen to include a 150,000 square foot Saks Fifth Avenue, and would leave the Yonge and Bloor location as a Hudson's Bay store.[6]

In August 2014, the centre became the subject of controversy when its property manager, Brookfield Properties Ltd, admitted to regularly confiscating bicycles that were locked to a pole on a municipal right of way on Bloor St. outside of the mall. Many Torontonians are accusing the centre of theft and the City of Toronto has assigned by-law officers to investigate.[7]

In 2021, the iconic "The Bay" signage that was displayed on top of the office tower for nearly 50 years was removed.[4][8] The following year, the Hudson's Bay Company announced that the Yonge and Bloor department store would close at the end of May 2022, and the site is expected to be redeveloped in conjunction with a major overhaul of the Bloor-Yonge TTC station.[9] The store finally closed on May 13, 2022.[10]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "2 Bloor East in Toronto, ON".
  2. ^ "Toronto – 2 Bloor East – axiis Tenant App".
  3. ^ "HBC Heritage — Timeline".
  4. ^ a b "Bay Signage Removed from Hudson's Bay Centre Tower at Iconic Downtown Toronto Intersection". July 23, 2021.
  5. ^ Wright, Lisa (November 29, 2013). "Saks sets sights on Yonge-Bloor". Toronto Star. Retrieved May 27, 2014.
  6. ^ Strauss, Marina (27 January 2014). "Tycoon shows his real estate savvy with sale of Hudson's Bay store". The Globe and Mail. Retrieved 2014-05-27.
  7. ^ "City investigating seizure of bikes at Hudson's Bay Centre". CBC News. 14 August 2014. Retrieved 2015-09-21.
  8. ^ Levy, Joel (September 26, 2019). "Old photographs of Yonge and Bloor over the years".
  9. ^ "Hudson's Bay to Close Bloor & Yonge Department Store in Downtown Toronto [Exclusive]". 24 February 2022.
  10. ^ "In Photos: The Last Days of Hudson's Bay at Yonge & Bloor in Downtown Toronto". 16 May 2022.

Note[edit]

External links[edit]