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Demolition application made for Sears building at Carlingwood Mall

The empty Sears building at Carlingwood Mall has a pending date with a wrecker’s ball.

Deputy Mayor Mark Taylor announced on Twitter on Tuesday that the mall had applied to demolish the Sears building “to make way for future plans.”

The City of Ottawa confirmed in a statement that an application has been made for permits to remove the longtime Sears building from the western end of the mall.

Taylor, the Bay Ward councillor, said he has been meeting with the Carlingwood Mall planning team for some time.

“The mall called to give me a heads up about two weeks ago that they were going to apply for a demo permit,” Taylor said. “We’ve had discussions since Sears closed about what the future of that space was going to be.”

While Carlingwood will likely break the news when the deal is done , Taylor suggests there will be a new anchor tenant coming to the mall, once it eliminates the old structure.

“They concluded the building had to come down,” Taylor said. “It’s an older building, and so far out of code that putting a new tenant in there and bringing it up to modern code would be financially prohibitive.”

Taylor has been told the mall intends to “respect the zoning” of that space, which is commercial/retail. If there is the intention to include some mixed use, with residential included, the plan would have to go to the city’s planning committee process.

While a demolition permit only takes a couple of weeks to process, it wasn’t immediately clear if the mall will demolish the Sears building before winter or wait until spring.

The plan will be unveiled in stages. First the demolition, then the addition of a new anchor tenant, and possibly, further development at the western end of the mall, where Sears had extra parking. That could include green space or another building.

Once the pillar store of Carlingwood, Sears closed in January as part of a corporate downsizing that took place across the region and country. The Sears store in the west end mall at 2165 Carling Ave., intersecting Woodroffe, was built in the 1950s.