nordstrom closing eaton centre

People in Toronto are already suggesting replacements for Nordstrom at the Eaton Centre

Less than eight years after entering the Canadian market, Nordstrom has announced that it will be closing all 13 of its stores north of the U.S. border — Rack locations included — with a "wind down" period that will end in June.

While a sad day for Nordy Club members (not to mention the 2,500 employees who will eventually lose their jobs in Canada,) some locals are already seeing silver linings around the soon-to-be-vacant department stores.

They're taking the form of enormous Dollarama, Zellers, Giant Tiger, Simons and even Arby's outposts.

At present, Toronto has five Nordstrom properties: Two "off-price" Nordstrom Racks (one at One Bloor, one at Vaughan Mills) and three proper, multi-floor department stores

There's the Sherway Gardens Nordstrom, the Yorkdale Shopping Centre Nordstrom and, of course, the OG Eaton Centre Nordstrom. All three are massive, but the Eaton Centre location holds special significance in this city.

Not only does it have the cleanest bathrooms in the entire neighbourhood, it's also one of the nicer ways to access the mall, serving for many as a pretty walkway between Yonge Street and the bowels of the bustling Eaton Centre.

"So I have to enter Eaton Centre through the Canadian Tire now," remarked one Twitter user upon hearing the news.

"Walked through that Eaton Centre location hundreds of times. Never bought a thing, but did use their crapper a few times," wrote another.

Some joked that the Eaton Centre's namesake department store chain (Eaton's) should come back from the dead to reclaim its old space, which transformed into Sears in the late 1990s, before it turned into Nordstrom.

Others have more avant-garde ideas for the space, like a "mega-sized Dollarama" or a new Honest Ed's.

Several have suggested turning the space into a Zeller's — a real Zeller's, not the store-in-store kind HBC plans to open inside Bay locations this year.

At least two people are vying (facetiously, I hope) for a really big Arby's at the massive downtown mall.

And some are making some suggestions that are surprisingly realistic for how ridiculous they sound.

"Can't wait for that huge ass space in Eaton Centre to be used as a Shein mega-store," wrote one, summing up the ills of modern clothing production and sales methods in one tweet,

Others pointed out that Spirit Halloween just loves to replace big, empty retail stores for a few months every fall.

Some got more specific, calling upon retailers like Quebec's Simons and Ireland's Primark to take up the mantle and replace Nordstrom.

Simons would be nice, but my money's on Spirit Halloween for fall 2023.

Lead photo by

Mike Beauvais

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