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COVID-19: Toronto malls reducing shopping hours

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Starting Monday, Cadillac Fairview, which owns 70 malls across six provinces, including the Eaton Centre, Yorkdale and Sherway, will limit operating hours at all its locations to between 11 a.m. and 7 pm. at least for the next two weeks. Most malls across Canada are following suit. Also within the GTA, Oxford Properties’ Square One, Mississauga and Ivanhoe Cambridge’s Vaughan Mills are doing the same.

The reduction in shopping hours is to ensure the well-being of shoppers and employees.

Notices like this one were posted on all Cadillac Fairview mall websites.

A statement by Cadillac Fairview says “our first priority is to ensure the safety and security of our employees, tenants/their employees, and guests across our portfolio of shopping centres and office properties. With the recent announcement by the World Health Organization, declaring COVID-19 as a pandemic we want to take the time to update you on the precautions we are taking.

“Effective Monday, March 16 mall operating hours will be Monday to Sunday: 11:00 a.m. – 7 p.m. These hours will remain in place for two weeks, at which point we will re-evaluate. Access to the property will remain unchanged, as we understand there are some services and tenants that may operate as per their usual hours of business, and we will continue to support them in their approach.

While Canada’s second largest shopping mall, Square One has made a similar statement saying: “The safety of our customers, employees and the public is our highest priority and we understand the concerns you may have about COVID-19,” reads a statement on the Square One, Mississauga website. “Our efforts are guided by global experts and health authorities and we will continue to monitor any changes in guidelines and protocol.”

The mall’s statement says “The uncertainty created by COVID-19 has resulted in some retailers adjusting their store hours. As such, we have decided to offer our retailers the option to reduce their store operating hours to 11 AM – 7 PM starting on Monday, March 16 for an initial two weeks.

Although some stores will choose to operate on reduced hours, Square One will remain open to you between 10 AM –9 PM to continue to provide access to stores that have decided to operate as normal and services such as medical facilities within our centre.

All malls assure that they are ramping up cleaning practices. Square One says they have intensified cleaning regimens, especially in high traffic areas of the shopping centre including stairwells, elevators, lobbies and washrooms. They have increased the number of available hand sanitizers throughout the malls and established Emergency preparedness and communication plans with the local public health departments.

The reduced shopping hours are in effect for at least the next two weeks. Malls across Canada area also following suit.

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