Investors are paying more attention to Nanaimo’s South End

Below is something from the local newspaper the Nanaimo Daily News. I think though that it’s important to point out that the new development phenomenon in the southern part of town is not just this area at the south end of the parkway near where Cedar Rd., the exit to Duke Point Ferries, and the Highway meet. There is also the phenomenon that is going on downtown, with the new conference centre hopping and even more millions that the provincial government has (again) announced it would give to pay for a cruise ship berth. There is also another $1.25 million being given to the University. These are all on top of earlier money given to these projects earlier this year.
The thing is, it has been the consensus among all the Realtors that I’ve spoken to on the topic for a few years now that the best investment areas in  Nanaimo are the near downtown areas and more recently we’re starting to see some more action in this location mentioned below and off extension road.  With the real estate markets having recently started a bit of a downturn in prices in the area, investors are starting to sniff around for deals.
Ryan Coffey
South End getting more attention from investors
Walter Cordery
Daily News

If you build it, they will come.

Major businesses are investing in the south of Nanaimo because of the number of new homes and planned developments in the area, according to Chris Sillem, with the city of Nanaimo’s planning department.

"Yes, absolutely that’s happening," Sillem said.

To prove his point, Sillem points to the new grocery store opening Sunday morning in Chase River.

On Sunday, Country Grocer opens a new supermarket in the South Parkway Mall. It replaces the Food Country in Southgate Plaza. Both stores are owned by the same company and all of the company’s six stores will now be recognized under the Country Grocer brand, said co-owner Wally Large.

Large said his firm has always recognized the potential for a large supermarket in the Chase River area and now that the population can support it his company wants to exchange the 17,000 square foot Food Country store with its brand new 40,000 square foot Country Grocer facility.

"The Cinnabar and Chase River area is expanding so we know that the market will be there for us," said Large.

He said he also recognized the potential of attracting shoppers from the proposed Cable Bay development.

"We have been in business on the other side of the (10th) street for 24 years and now because of consumer demand, we have decided the people who have supported us in this area deserve a brand new beautiful grocery store," Large said.

"This is something we have wanted to do for a long time to build a store in Nanaimo’s south end," he said.

Jake Zwynenburg, who will be the new store’s manager, said Country Grocer will employ more than 100 people, while Food Country employed only 60.

The new Country Grocer will feature a huge produce department that features many organic products, a full-service meat and fish counter, a bakery where everything is made on-site, a deli and in-store cafe which will offer freshly made soups, sandwiches and organic coffee.

"The new store will have the same owners and familiar team members from Food Country," Large said.

Sillem said beside the new Country Grocer store, Rona is building a large new retail outlet at 10th Street and the Island Highway and Co-op is constructing a new gas bar and convenience story adjacent to the Moose Lodge in Chase River.

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