Rideau Centre

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Coordinates: 45°25′27″N 75°41′27″W / 45.4243°N 75.6907°W / 45.4243; -75.6907

CF Rideau Centre
Rideau CentreXmas (2).jpg
The Rideau Centre at Christmas before renovations
Location 50 Rideau Street
Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
K1N 9J7
Opening date March 16, 1983
Developer Viking Rideau, Eaton's
Management Cindy VanBuskirk
Owner Cadillac Fairview
No. of stores and services 180[1]
Total retail floor area 739,842 sq ft (68,733.6 m2)
No. of floors 4
Parking 1,590 spaces in two indoor lots and a surface lot
Website http://www.rideaucentre.com/

The Rideau Centre (French: Centre Rideau) (branded as "CF Rideau Centre") is a four-level shopping centre on Rideau Street in Downtown Ottawa, Ontario, Canada. It borders on Rideau Street (and the ByWard Market), the Rideau Canal, the Mackenzie King Bridge, and Nicholas Street. Over 20 million people visit the mall annually.[1]

Anchors and majors[edit]



Former anchors[edit]

  • Eaton's - closed; replaced by Sears in 1999
  • Sears - closed; replaced by Nordstrom in 2015


At the time of its construction in 1981 and 1982, the Rideau Centre was somewhat controversial: a whole block of stores was torn down to make room for the Rideau Centre, and many people were opposed to their destruction.[citation needed] Others feared the impact of increased traffic and buses on the area. The Eaton's department store chain, one of the partners in the development, caused further controversy when it attempted to rename the mall the "Rideau Eaton Centre" while it was still under construction; the company backed down in the face of local opposition to the name change.[2] This mall was officially opened on March 16, 1983. On the morning of Wednesday, June 8 2016 the Rideau Centre was evacuated after a sinkhole opened up on Rideau Street .

Features and surroundings[edit]

The Rideau Centre complex includes approximately 180 retailers, the 487-room Westin Hotel, a rooftop park and the Ottawa Convention Centre (Old Congress Centre). At 740,757 sq ft (68,818.6 m2) in size, it is the fourth largest shopping centre in the Ottawa-Gatineau area (behind the St. Laurent Centre, Les Promenades Gatineau and Bayshore Shopping Centre).

The Rideau Centre and the adjacent National Defence Headquarters building are both served by OC Transpo's Mackenzie King Transitway station, which is served by several major bus routes.


Rideau Centre security and maintenance staff have been the subject of a number of controversies. In 2002, security staff handcuffed and detained two men for carrying an Israeli flag in order to enforce a mall rule prohibiting political signs.[3] The men claimed that abusive comments were made towards them as Jews but a police investigation was unable to sustain the allegations of anti-semitic abuse.[4] In 2011, security staff handcuffed and detained a man who was attempting to cancel a gym membership.[5] The man was released when police arrived and the Rideau Centre's tenant GoodLife Fitness suffered a media-backlash over the incident.[6][7][8] That same year, as 9 people, including a former Speaker of the House of Commons and other dignitaries were trapped for more than an hour and a half in the mall elevator,[9] a former Senator criticized the Rideau Centre for its slow response time.[10]

Redevelopment project[edit]

Rendering of one entrances of the future Rideau Centre expansion.

On September 26, 2013, Cadillac Fairview announced its plans to expand the 30 year-old shopping centre. The redevelopment project will expand the Rideau Centre by 230,000 square feet and renovate retail and dining spaces.[11] A key feature of the redevelopment project was a 35,000 square foot dining hall that will offer a unique and elevated dining experience for Ottawa shoppers, featuring 16 premium branded eating establishments, seating for 850 people and the introduction of reusable dinnerware, glassware and metal cutlery.[11] The projected cost of the redevelopment project is CAD $360M.[11] As part of the renovation, three major retailers will enter the centre, establishing itself as a shopping centre with a truly varied set of tenants. Inclusive in the new tenants to the centre, specifically in the high-end market, are Tiffany & Co., Kate Spade and Stuart Weitzman, to name a few.[12] Large retailers set to increase the centre's size and outreach to different clientele include Nordstrom, which is a new entry to the centre as of March 6, 2015 consisting of 157,000 sq. ft.[13] The Hudson's Bay Company announced plans for major renovations following the announcement of Nordstrom's opening; the 335,000 sq. ft. downtown flagship will see a complete overhaul.[14] Lastly in the large store additions, Simons announced plans to enter the Rideau Centre as a new tenant as of August 2016 in a store planned to be larger than 80,000 sq. ft.[15] This significant and impactful expansion has prompted many retails already within the Rideau Centre to pursue renovations, increasing the opulence of the centre in turn. Stores such as Harry Rosen have undergone major renovations, capitalizing on the Ottawa area's density of high income salaried government employees.[11][12] While the Rideau Centre does not have plans to make their shopping destination focused on high end luxury, the company says that the city is more of an “aspirational luxury” marketplace, one step removed from shops such as Louis Vuitton and Prada.[16] Aside from the retail and interior space additions and renovations, the redesigned centre will include significant façade enhancements along Rideau Street including a refurbished Ogilvy Building heritage façade and a complete interior renovation that will feature new quartz flooring, enhanced lighting, glass guardrails and modern amenities.[11]

The new expansion at the Rideau Centre opened to the public on August 11, 2016, bringing the total retail floor area to over 969,000 sq. ft.[17]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b "Rideau Center located in Ottawa, Ontario (location, hours, store list)". Shopping Canada. 2016-04-18. Retrieved 2016-04-28. 
  2. ^ Ottawa, The (2006-04-16). "Sens, Habs rivalry may have to do". Canada.com. Retrieved 2016-04-28. 
  3. ^ "Wednesday, April 24, 2002 Israeli backer slams mall cops - Pushed, cuffed, locked up and insulted because he's Jewish?". IMRA. 2002-04-24. Retrieved 2016-04-28. 
  4. ^ "American Jewish Year". Books.google.ca. p. 314. Retrieved 2016-04-28. 
  5. ^ "Attempt to cancel gym membership turned violent, client says - Ottawa - CBC News". Cbc.ca. 2011-01-12. Retrieved 2016-04-28. 
  6. ^ "Gym Guards Beat Man To Pulp When He Tried To Cancel – Consumerist". Consumerist.com. 2011-01-12. Retrieved 2016-04-28. 
  7. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on August 26, 2014. Retrieved October 6, 2011. 
  8. ^ "Archived copy". Retrieved February 13, 2012. [dead link]
  9. ^ [1][dead link]
  10. ^ "580 CFRA News Talk Radio :: Homepage". Cfra.com. Retrieved 2016-04-28. 
  11. ^ a b c d e "Rideau Centre Launches $360 Million Redevelopment Project". Cadillacfairview.com. Retrieved 2015-11-12. 
  12. ^ a b "3 high-enders coming to Rideau Centre". Ottawa Sun. Retrieved 2015-11-12. 
  13. ^ "Nordstrom opens at Rideau Centre - Retail - Ottawa Business Journal". Obj.ca. Retrieved 2015-11-12. 
  14. ^ "Hudson's Bay Initiates Unprecedented Store Renovations". RETAIL INSIDER. Retrieved 2015-11-12. 
  15. ^ "Simons department store prepares for August opening in Gatineau". Ottawa Citizen. Retrieved 2015-11-12. 
  16. ^ "Rideau Centre GM gives update on redevelopment project - Local - Ottawa Business Journal". Obj.ca. Retrieved 2015-11-12. 
  17. ^ "Rideau Centre welcomes 25 new retailers". Retrieved 2016-08-12. 

External links[edit]