The so-called 'Toronto Premium Outlets' Mall is now open.
If only you could get anywhere near it.
Traffic was so bad on opening day last week that the OPP had to shut down the Trafalgar Road exit from the westbound 401 because it was blocking the highway.
From the east, it was stop-and-go from as far away as Mavis Road.
Traffic eastbound was also backed up west of Highway 25.
Not that there were that many cars exiting from eastbound 401. But if there's a traffic jam, well, you DO have to slow down to take a look, right?
Here's what it looked like Sunday afternoon, courtesy of the SatNav system in the Chevy Impala which shows traffic congestion in red:
Might be a bit hard to make out. Maybe there's a way to blow the photo up on your screen?
Anyway, I couldn't figure out how to have the SatNav system NOT show that address "8th Line Milton" on the map. But where those two red lines meet, that's Trafalgar Road. Steeles is a titch north of that (up and a shade to the left); the mall is on the south-east corner of Trafalgar and Steeles.
You can see that the 401 is essentially blocked in both directions.
The red line heading straight off the top is westbound 407 - it too is blocked. Imagine having paid twelve bucks to ride the 407 - kinda cuts into the 'Premium Outlets' savings, doesn't it?
Worse still of course if you don't give a damn about Manolo Blahniks or anything else they sell there. You just want to get to work, get home, get to the airport, get to the hospital.
But you can't, thanks to this wonder of modern retailing.
What - has nobody ever heard of Amazon.com? The days of Big Box stores and Outlet Malls are OVER, people.
Certainly, people who live in this area (like me - aw, you guessed...) wish this thing had never crossed anybody's mind.
They claim to have 2,300 parking spaces. What they need is their own exit from the 401 so customers could get to those spaces.
Presumably when the thrill wears off, traffic will return to something closer to normal.
But until this thing goes bankrupt - it won't be a moment too soon - I guess we're stuck with it.
We locals at least know a few ways around this intersection. You'd better fire up your SatNav to figure out a bypass too.
Oh by the way, I don't even know if you can get Manolo Blahniks at this place. Do I get any brownie points for even knowing what Manolo Blahniks are?