Answering community-driven demand for retail development in an underserved market

Kemptville Colonnade


Kemptville Colonnade was a 90-acre industrial parcel in Kemptville, Ontario which was rezoned and redeveloped to meet the needs of a grossly underserved retail market. Our multi-disciplinary development team and leasing experts built a strategic business case which was executed to meet owner objectives and returns.

Key Challenges

Kemptville Colonnade underwent a detailed multi-year entitlements process inclusive of a zoning by-law amendment to permit retail uses, a plan of subdivision process to create a holistic yet flexible master plan across the entirety of the site, and individual site plan control processes to design and integrate individual blocks and tenant requirements.

The 2008-09 recession posed significant challenges which resulted in several national
retailers downsizing or renegotiating lease terms. Notably, Wal-Mart postponed its opening for two years and downsized by 20% and Home Depot terminated their agreement, which resulted in other challenges with the remaining 68,000 sq.ft. of ancillary tenants. As a result, the purchase/sale agreement with Canadian Tire had to be renegotiated and relocated to the former Home Depot lands. All of this also affected
the plans of 68,000 sq.ft. of ancillary tenants. The development and leasing teams worked cohesively to minimize the overall development schedule and financial impacts.

A multi-phased development and construction plan allowed retailers to fully operate at various stages, while creating little disruption to the surrounding retailers and community. This was done through strategic site planning and construction management to accommodate the 20+ tenants.


Kemptville Colonnade is now the premier facility of its kind in Eastern Ontario with 273,000 sq.ft. of strong national anchors and retail tenants. Original leases are now rolling over with established rent increases thereby augmenting returns for the current owners, Desjardins Financial. The centre remains fully leased and managed by Colonnade BridgePort with development services provided for blocks yet to be developed. Of note, construction of the new 6,000 sq. ft. PetValu was completed in 2018.

The long-term success of Kemptville Colonnade is indicative of Colonnade BridgePort’s strong relationships within the tenant community and is representative of its depth in every facet of retail real estate.