Pacific Mall

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Coordinates: 43°49′35″N 79°18′23″W / 43.82639°N 79.30639°W / 43.82639; -79.30639

Pacific Mall
Pacific Mall
Location Markham, Ontario, Canada
Opening date 1997
Developer The Torgan Group
Owner Pacific Mall Condominium Corporation
No. of stores and services 450
No. of anchor tenants 2
No. of floors 3
Pacific Mall
Traditional Chinese 太古廣場
Simplified Chinese 太古广场
Pacific Heritage town

Pacific Mall is an Asian shopping centre in Markham, Ontario, Canada. It is located on the northeast side of Steeles Avenue and Kennedy Road, along the city's border with Toronto.


The site formerly occupied by Cullen Country Barns, a farm themed complex housing shops, theatre and restaurant. The complex was founded by Len Cullen (1925-2006), founder of Cullen Garden Centres and later operator of Cullen Gardens and Miniature Village in Whitby, Ontario. The structure consisted of two barn wings with Gambrel roofs and a concrete silo. None were historic structures dating back to the time when the site was a working farm, but they were acquired by Cullen and moved from Pickering, Ontario to Markham in the 1970s.[1]

A fire damaged part of the complex in 1988[2] and demolished in 1994. Some portions of Market Village Mall next door mimics the old Cullen complex.


The two entrance roads of the mall are Redlea Avenue and Clayton Drive. Pacific Mall is surrounded by an existing shopping plaza, including the Market Village, and together they encompass over 500 stores and are served by both indoor and outdoor parking areas with over 1,500 parking spaces combined. It has two floors and an underground level that leads to an underground parking lot. Designed by Wallman Clewes Bergman Architects, their first proposal was modified by the aesthetic expectations of Markham Town Council (now City Council). Pacific Mall first opened its doors for business in 1997. Its Cantonese name, "太古廣場" (Tai Gu Gwong Cheung), is derived from Pacific Place in Hong Kong. The mall has a total of 270,000 square feet (25,000 m2) of retail space.

Pacific Mall incorporates a traditional Pacific-style[citation needed] market.

The clinic and dentist's office are on the second floor, along with an area containing many shops and restaurants. The corridors of the main floor are named after streets in Hong Kong; this is where the majority of shops are located, and any major events take place. In the basement, there are bathrooms, a view of the underground parking lot, and other shops.

As an official Canadian Tourist Attraction, the mall is exempt from the Retail Business Holiday Act and is open year-round including statutory holidays. Pacific Mall also hosts festivals and celebrations for the community.[3][4]

Problems and concerns[edit]

Inside the mall on a Sunday afternoon

Counterfeit merchandise[edit]

Pacific Mall and neighbouring Asian malls are known for their proliferation of video games, movies, music, electronic devices, and other entertainment media made in violation of copyright law. In May 2005, over $800,000 worth of unlicensed DVDs were seized by the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP).

On July 13, 2006, the RCMP raided a number of stores in the Pacific Mall and other locations associated to the manufacture of counterfeit video game software, seizing a large quantity of games and shutting down a major illicit software manufacturing facility.[5]

In the week of August 8, 2008, thirty-three separate businesses were observed to be openly selling counterfeited merchandise in the mall, primarily in the form of DVD movies.[original research?] On February 6–7, 2009, the RCMP raided a number of stores in the Pacific Mall and other locations within the mall being used for the manufacture of counterfeit DVDs, seizing over 49,000 titles, 217 DVD burners and over 100,000 blank DVDs. Four subjects working within the mall were charged with multiple counts under the Copyright Act, also with Possession Of Property Obtained by Crime, and Fraud.[6]

On March 16, 2009, the RCMP Federal Enforcement Section teamed with the York Regional Police Service and commenced uniformed foot patrols in the shopping malls located in south Markham - Pacific Mall among them, in an effort to combat the widespread sales of counterfeit items in the malls.[7][8]

On January 12, 2018, a United States government report claimed that Pacific Mall was "one of the world's notorious sources of counterfeit goods".[9][10] The report stated that over the past two decades, the police have raided the mall three times for counterfeit goods.[11] [12]

On February 20, 2018, Pacific Mall management claimed that it was "deeply disturbed" to hear it made it onto the US government list for "world's most notorious sources of counterfeit goods", and that it would give warnings to vendors and manufacturers that sell or distribute counterfeit goods, and that it launched a website for the public to report knockoff items.[13]

Traffic congestion[edit]

The mall is also a major contributor to traffic congestion in the area. A few years after Market Village opened, it was already known to suffer from slow parking turnovers. Though Pacific Mall itself contains an underground garage facility, that was the only new parking added to the area, and it was not enough to offset the significant increase in demand to the area's already busy lots. Unlike most other malls which were planned with increased amounts of traffic projected in the future, Pacific Mall lacks the infrastructure to deal with its large amount of traffic. The road layout of the mall was designed only with Market Village in mind and was never intended to handle the volume of traffic it does today. The stretch of Steeles between Kennedy and Midland, containing a majority of other stores, is slow moving.[14][15][16]

Future expansion[edit]

On June 30, 2006, Pacific Mall and Market Village announced plans for a major expansion to the south shopping complex in south Markham. An additional 400,000 square feet (37,000 square metres) of retail space, a luxury hotel and a multi-level parking structure were to be constructed. The project was expected to begin in a year or two, and would bring the combined size of the malls (which includes neighbouring Remington Centre to about one million square feet).[17] In mid-2009, the plan was delayed until late 2009, with an early 2010s opening; nothing further has been mentioned in the media.Market Village was officially closed on March 1, 2018 and is no longer used for the public. [18]


February 2009 shooting[edit]

On February 20, 2009, Kit Chen 'Daniel' Cheong, 26, was shot when gunfire broke out in the mall around 8:45 pm. Cheong was in the XSITE cell phones store where he was shot in the head. He was rushed to Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre, but was pronounced dead on February 21, 2009. Critics and private investigators say it was due to an unfortunate cellphone deal in which he refused to let the perpetrator return his cell phone. Others have noted that it was due to mistaken identity.[19] The primary suspect in the case, Bryan Valentine Gardner, was caught on security camera installed in Pacific Mall, and was eventually arrested in London, Ontario on September 2, 2010, approximately 18 months after the incident.[20] Bryan was sentenced to life in prison with no chance of parole until 2026.[21]

Transportation access[edit]

Pacific Mall is located at the major intersection of Steeles Avenue and Kennedy Road. It is served by both Toronto Transit Commission (43 Kennedy and 53 Steeles East) and York Region Transit (8 Kennedy) buses. In addition, it is located within walking distance from Milliken GO Station.

See also[edit]


  1. ^
  2. ^
  3. ^ No stopping shopping at Pacific Mall on Christmas The Toronto Star, 25 December 2012
  4. ^ Markham mall granted holiday exemption Markham Economist & Sun
  5. ^ "Entertainment Software Industry Applauds RCMP Anti-piracy Action Against Pacific Mall Piracy". ESA. 2006. Archived from the original on 2006-08-18. Retrieved 2006-07-31. 
  6. ^ "RCMP Seize 1000s of Pirated DVD's". CNW Group. 2009. Retrieved 2009-05-06. 
  7. ^ "RCMP and YPS start anti-counterfeiting patrols". Ming Pao. 2009. Retrieved 2009-03-18. 
  8. ^ "Singtao reporter follows police officers on patrol in Pacific Mall". Sing Tao Daily. 2009. Retrieved 2009-03-18. 
  9. ^ "2017 Notorious Markets List Spotlights Global Piracy and Counterfeiting, Defends American Products and Workers" (Press release). Office of the United States Trade Representative. January 12, 2018. 
  10. ^ "2017 Out-of-Cycle Review of Notorious Markets" (PDF). Office of the United States Trade Representative. January 11, 2018. 
  11. ^ "Toronto-area mall one of world's most notorious sources of counterfeit goods: U.S." CTV News. January 12, 2018. 
  12. ^ "Pacific Mall is one of world's most notorious sources of counterfeit goods: U.S." January 12, 2018. 
  13. ^ "Pacific Mall 'deeply disturbed' to learn it is 'notorious market' for counterfeit goods". February 20, 2018. 
  14. ^ Scarborough Community Council denies bid to stop shopping mall expansion[permanent dead link] The Scarborough Mirror, 2 October 2007
  15. ^ Markham Malls Unveiled Markham Economist Sun, 20 September 2010
  16. ^ Pacific Mall 2 planned Markham Economist & Sun, 15 March 2010
  17. ^ "June 15, 2005 – Pacific Mall and Market Village". Corporate Markham In The News. Retrieved 2006-12-07. 
  18. ^ Wong, Tony (2009-06-19). "A huge gamble on Markham Asian mall". Toronto Star. Retrieved 2009-06-19. 
  19. ^ "February 22, 2009 – Police release video in Pacific Mall shooting". National Post. Retrieved 2009-03-19. 
  20. ^ Arrest in Pacific Mall murder Toronto Sun, 2 September 2010
  21. ^ [1] Newstalk 1010, 28 August 2013

External links[edit]