Is there life for Village Square once the Friedman’s sell? There are certainly some great ideas being talked about.

By Pepper Parr

BURLINGTON, ON. March 28, 2013 There is no deal – yet, but there are some very interesting conversations taking place about what might be done with Village Square.  There are also a lot of myths that need to get – de-mythed if anything is to happen with the property.

An industry observer who knows more about Village Square than most, scoffs at the suggestion everyone loves Village Square. “if they loved the place – then why weren’t they patronizing shops when there were shops there? “ Yes, there were problems with the management of the property and the rental agreements were terrible,  which drove many of the restaurants out of the location.  But a change of management isn’t going to make a difference.

A personal grooming service spent more than a year in the Village and finally pulled up stakes and has moved to a John Street location. “One of my clients” commented that “the place just felt dead and it certainly wasn’t inviting.  Quaint to look at but it just wasn’t working and I couldn’t afford to stay there.”

Rahoon’s has managed to stay afloat because it is a family owned operation that doesn’t have the labour costs others have.  Food is fine by the way.  Give it a try.

Another Burlingtonian who tends to eat out frequently walked into Rahoon’s, the Persian restaurant that has a fine menu and excellent service and price that are not the norm in Burlington.  “The man’s face just lit up when I walked in” said this realtor – “I think I may have been his only customer that evening.”

The Friedman family has own the property since the early 1980’s and while Jack Friedman was active there were tenants even if they came and went frequently.  But when his health declined and the day-to-day operation of the property fell into the hands of his daughters, Susan and Debra  – well things didn’t get better.

Debra spends at least a day week in Burlington while Susan, a lawyer who specializes in litigation, does the talking for the family – there isn’t an active plan to market and manage the space.

Village Square: It was one of Jack Friedman’s dreams.  Potential new owners have new dreams that could include office space, a downtown supermarket as well as re-location of the historic properties.  The condo on the left hand side was where the bus terminal was located

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