Main entrance to the Pacific Mall
|Location||Markham, Ontario, Canada|
|Developer||The Torgan Group|
|Owner||Pacific Mall Condominium Corporation|
|No. of stores and services||450|
|No. of anchor tenants||2|
|Total retail floor area||270,000 sq ft (25,084 m2)|
|No. of floors||3|
The mall is built on the site formerly occupied by Cullen Country Barns, a farm-themed complex housing shops, theatre, and restaurants. The complex was founded by Len Cullen, the founder of Cullen Gardens and Miniature Village in Whitby, Ontario, and 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. A fire damaged part of the complex in 1988, and it was demolished in 1994; some portions of the former Market Village mimic the Cullen complex.
Pacific Mall opened in 1997. Designed by Wallman Clewes Bergman Architects, their initial proposal was modified by the aesthetic expectations of Markham Town Council (since promoted to City Council in 2012). Its Cantonese name, "太古廣場" (Tai Gu Gwong Cheung), is derived from Pacific Place in Hong Kong.
Pacific Mall is surrounded by an existing shopping plaza, including the former Market Village. Collectively, the mall and its surrounding buildings encompass over 500 stores and 1,500 indoor and outdoor parking spaces.
The mall has two floors and a basement level that leads to an underground parking lot. The corridors of the main floor are named after streets in Hong Kong (such as various numbered streets ending in the digit 8, Hennessy Avenue, Hollywood Avenue, Pacific Avenue, Queen's Avenue, and Nathan Avenue, though Hennessy, Hollywood, Queen's, and Nathan are actually roads in Hong Kong, while Pacific Avenue is named after the aforementioned Pacific Place); this is where the majority of shops are located, and where major events held at the mall take place. The second floor contains additional shops, a food court, and Heritage Town, a Pacific-style market that contains approximately 100 vendors.
On June 15, 2005, Pacific Mall and Market Village announced a 400,000-square-foot (37,000-square-metre) expansion that would add additional retail space, a luxury hotel, condominiums, and a multi-level parking structure. The expansion, which would link to the planned Remington Centre, would bring the combined size of the malls to one million square feet. Initially slated to commence construction in 2009, the project has faced numerous delays. While the expansion plan was endorsed by Markham City Council in 2011, it requires additional approvals from the municipal government of Toronto, as well as consent from a majority of the ownership of the Pacific Mall, 40 percent of which is composed of individual retailers.
The Pacific Mall is noted for its sale of counterfeit and pirated goods, including video games, movies, music, electronic devices, cosmetics, apparel, and fragrances. In January 2018, the mall was listed as a notorious market by the Office of the United States Trade Representative (USTR), which noted that vendors in the Pacific Mall “operate largely with impunity” despite requests for assistance from law enforcement. Pacific Mall management responded that they were "deeply disturbed" by the designation, stated that they would give warnings to vendors who sold illicit goods, and launched a website for the public to report counterfeit items.
The mall has been raided multiple times by the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP):
- On July 13, 2006, over one thousand copies of pirated video game software were seized.
- On February 6–7, 2009, over 49,000 DVDs, 217 DVD burners, and over 100,000 blank DVDs were seized. Four individuals were charged with multiple counts under the Copyright Act.
- On December 3, 2012, over $3 million worth of counterfeit goods were seized from the Pacific Mall as a part of "Project Consumer Safety."
- On June 27, 2018, seven search warrants were executed for stores in the Pacific Mall, resulting in the seizure of clothing, handbags, and cell phone accessories.
In March 2009, the RCMP teamed with the York Regional Police and commenced uniformed foot patrols in shopping malls located in south Markham, including the Pacific Mall, in an effort to curb the sale of counterfeit items.
Pacific Mall is a major contributor to traffic congestion in southern Markham. The surrounding road infrastructure, which was built only to accommodate Market Village, is insufficient in accommodating the large volume of vehicle traffic that the mall receives. Pacific Mall also suffers from a parking shortage; though the mall contains an underground garage facility, no additional parking has been added since the mall's opening in 1997.
February 2009 shooting
On February 20, 2009, Kit Chen 'Daniel' Cheong, 26, was shot in the head at the XSITE Cell Phones store in the Pacific Mall. He was rushed to Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre, but was pronounced dead on February 21, 2009. The primary suspect in the case, Bryan Valentine Gardner, was seen on security cameras installed in Pacific Mall. He was eventually arrested in London, Ontario on September 2, 2010, 18 months after the incident. In 2013, Gardner was sentenced to life in prison, with no chance of parole until 2026.
Pacific Mall is located at the major intersection of Steeles Avenue and Kennedy Road. It is served by both the Toronto Transit Commission (TTC routes 43 Kennedy and 53 Steeles East) and York Region Transit (YRT Route 8 Kennedy) buses, and is located within walking distance from Milliken GO Station, which connects to the Stouffville line. The two entrance roads of the mall are Redlea Avenue and Clayton Drive.
- No stopping shopping at Pacific Mall on Christmas The Toronto Star, 25 December 2012
- Markham mall granted holiday exemption Markham Economist & Sun
- "June 15, 2005 – Pacific Mall and Market Village". Corporate Markham In The News (via Archive). Retrieved 2018-05-30.
- Wong, Tony (2009-06-19). "A huge gamble on Markham Asian mall". Toronto Star. Retrieved 2009-06-19.
- Susilo, Darren (2012-07-30). "The Remington Centre will not be a strip club". blogTO. Retrieved 2018-05-30.
- Persico, Amanda (2016-02-17). "Lack of agreement stalls Markham retail hub's redevelopment". YorkRegion.com. Retrieved 2018-05-30.
- "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.
- "2017 Out-of-Cycle Review of Notorious Markets" (PDF). Office of the United States Trade Representative. January 11, 2018.
- "Pacific Mall 'deeply disturbed' to learn it is 'notorious market' for counterfeit goods". CP24.com. February 20, 2018.
- "Toronto-area mall one of world's most notorious sources of counterfeit goods: U.S." CTV News. January 12, 2018.
- "Pacific Mall is one of world's most notorious sources of counterfeit goods: U.S." CP24.com. January 12, 2018.
- "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.
- "RCMP Seize 1000s of Pirated DVD's". CityNews. 2018. Retrieved 2018-06-27.
- "Pacific Mall raid protects us shoppers, right?". blogTO. 2009. Retrieved 2009-05-06.
- "Police raid Pacific Mall shops looking for counterfeit goods". CNW Group. 2012. Retrieved 2018-07-034. Check date values in:
- "RCMP and YPS start anti-counterfeiting patrols". Ming Pao. 2009. Retrieved 2009-03-18.
- "Singtao reporter follows police officers on patrol in Pacific Mall". Sing Tao Daily. 2009. Retrieved 2009-03-18.
- Scarborough Community Council denies bid to stop shopping mall expansion[permanent dead link] The Scarborough Mirror, 2 October 2007
- Markham Malls Unveiled Markham Economist Sun, 20 September 2010
- Pacific Mall 2 planned Markham Economist & Sun, 15 March 2010
- Arrest in Pacific Mall murder Toronto Sun, 2 September 2010
-  Newstalk 1010, 28 August 2013
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