10-unit redevelopment proposed for former Home Hardware in Stratford

After more than two years of sitting empty, there's finally a plan for the former Home Hardware in Stratford, P.E.I.

Sable Arc Studios receives preliminary approval to turn site into 10-unit mixed-use property

Stratford Town Council has granted preliminary approval to an application from Charlottetown's Sable Arc Studios to redevelop the former Home Hardware property. (Laura Meader/CBC)

After more than two years of sitting empty, there's finally a plan for the former Home Hardware in Stratford, P.E.I.

Stratford Town Council granted preliminary approval to an application from Charlottetown architecture firm Sable Arc Studios to redevelop the property located at 14 Kinlock Rd.

The renovation will include a complete redesign of the exterior and interior of the building to become a 10-unit commercial property.

"We feel it's a good news story for Stratford," said Mayor David Dunphy. "It's a property that's in a key location in the town, it's in the heart of the town, a high-traffic area with lots of parking and of course a big building there that can be used."

Conceptual drawings show a potential mix of medical and other businesses. (Sable Arc Studios)

The town has been looking for a potential new owner for the property since Home Hardware closed its doors for good prior to Christmas in 2015, affecting 60 staff.

Vanco Farms Ltd.came close to purchasing the property last spring, but backed away from a potential deal because of a legal dispute involving Home Hardware and developer Tim Banks. The legal dispute is ongoing.

Now, Vanco's sister company, Tangible Capital Inc., has agreed to a long-term leasing deal with Home Hardware with an eye to eventually owning the building.

Mayor David Dunphy said the property is in a key location in the heart of Stratford. (Steve Bruce/CBC)

Robert Haggis, principal architect for Sable Arc Studios, said 50 to 60 per cent of the building has been spoken for, with a plan that includes two large tenants. The concept plans drawn up for the preliminary approval from Stratford are subject to change based on tenants' needs, he said.

Haggis expects construction to begin in the summer and would include a complete facelift of the building and additional parking.

"I'm very excited to see this," he said. "Outside of being given a reasonably complex project because there are a lot of moving parts, it's also nice to be a part of something that my children will be able to experience and drive by to Stratford school every day."

Construction on the site is expected to begin this summer, Haggis says. (Sable Arc Studios)

The town of Stratford has grown rapidly in recent years and more commercial space is needed, Dunphy said.

"We feel that there is a demand for additional commercial development in Stratford and we think this development is certainly going to help push that and make that happen and hopefully it will be a bit of a catalyst for additional development going forward," Dunphy said.

Sable Arc Studios will now work more with the tenants on what they need for the building and then provide the town with more detailed information of its plans for the site. Those plans will need to be reviewed by town staff prior to the issuing of a development permit.

Corrections

  • A previous version of this story incorrectly stated that the legal dispute between Home Hardware and developer Tim Banks had been resolved. In fact, it is ongoing.
    Feb 22, 2018 4:43 PM AT

With files from Iain Boekhoff

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