The long-awaited Canadian Tire store in North Saanich slated to open Friday, will be the first retailer to open at Sandown Park Shopping Centre, the site of the former Sandown race track.
Grant Wood, owner and operator of Canadian Tire Store No. 932, said it is a soft opening, with the formal launch planned for Nov. 8 from 8 a.m. until 11 a.m. featuring giveaways and an appearance by legendary NHL goaltender Kirk McLean.
Wood said it took just over two months to set up the store, which included fixture assembly and electrical work. There will be 32,000 sq. ft. of retail space and touch screens throughout the store will allow customers to search for products and check prices.
Key cutting and skate sharpening which will be available right away and a garden centre will take shape after the store opens, and will eventually have a three-season greenhouse.
“All that’s left is to clean the floor and start selling,” Wood said.
Manager Mike Salkus, who has worked in auto repair for 40 years, said the new garage was a “a service manager’s dream.”
Automated equipment will save labour, with machines to balance and break down tires, which he said would save a lot of sweat if done many times a day.
Wood himself is from B.C., and spent a number of years in the Comox Valley. He opened his previous store in Newfoundland, and hopes to stay in the area with this latest store.