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Jan 11, 2007 02:28 PM

T&T Supermarket to open downtown Toronto at Waterfront

In today's Toronto Star business section, there is an article about the Taiwanese/Chinese supermarket, T&TT, opening a branch by the waterfront in downtown Toronto this fall.

The store will be located in the former Knob Hill Farms supermarket on Cherry St., just north of Polson Ave.

A friend of mine was worried what it will do to Chinatown. Understandably, there will be some effect. But T&T's location is still not convenient by public transport, as opposed to Chinatown's Dundas/Spadina junction. Also, as much as I love T&T, it isn't the best price on everything. It is largely good on variety and different focus than conventional supermarkets. Chinatown still has competitiveness on price, and selection of produce. And those frequenting Chinatown East on Gerrard will not suddenly stop going there for food and shopping simply because T&T appeared. It's just one more choice of venue.

Still, I can't wait!

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  1. I agree ah123! I think this is great since the Knob Hill space has been vacant for so long. Toronto East is on the up...

    1. Well, as a chowhound, I'm thrilled about this. But as a Leslieville resident, I'm concerned. I feel this will be the death knell of "Chinatown East". As it is, most of the restaurants are empty at dinner already, but the better stores are still very busy. With a T&T in the area, I fear that only those too economically disadvantaged to shop at T&T or unable to conveniently get there will continue to shop on Gerrard. Thus declining business plus declining quality. I hope I'm wrong.

      1 Reply
      1. re: embee

        I remember when there were really only 2 Chinatowns - the one on Dundas that started out located just west of Bay and then moved to the Spadina area, and the one on Gerrard. Then came the movement to the burbs, first to Scarborough then to Markham/ Richmond Hill/ Thornhill that has made the old Chinatowns inconsequential.

        Now these downtown Chinatowns are a shadow of their former selves and seen as old, dirty and frequented mostly by local, relatively poorer, residents (at least that's the perception). So the "death knell" was dealt long before T&T even came into the picture.

        In fact, on the contrary, one could conceivably argue that this new downtown T&T may attract some Chinese residents back into the downtown area which may give back some life to the downtown Chinatowns.

      2. I agree with the original poster, T&T is quite expensive, when compared to the local Chinatowns. As for me, living in central T.O, I won't be heading down there too often (plus, the thought of biking with a sack of rice on my back uphill is a little tiring).

        1. The T&T in Mississauga is a much miniaturized version of the big-ass east-end locations. Given the fact there are 2 big Chinese supermarkets within about .5km, I'm surprised they even bothered.The upside, though, is an ongoing price war on staples. T&T's takeout/counter grub is still good, though.

          1. Oooh, now I'll get to choose between the chip truck or T&T snacks after walking the dog at Cherry Beach--that's going to be challenging...and fattening...