It’s last call for the NSLC in downtown Yarmouth.
Nova Scotia Liquor Corporation has decided to permanently close the Main Street location at the end of the day Friday, Nov. 10.
Beverly Ware, communications advisor for the NSLC, says reasons for the closure include the limitations of the building, the fact the NSLC is investing more into their Starrs Road location and the business volume on Main Street.
“We’ve had that store for almost exactly 10 years so it is time that it needs a significant amount of investment to bring it up to acceptable standards for us,” she said.
Because it was too much money to do this, Ware said the NSLC issued an expression of interest for another downtown location.
“We weren’t able to find another suitable space through this expression of interest,” she said, noting they weren’t able to find a location that met criteria they had set out such as square footage, on-site parking and preferred loading zones.
“We are going to be investing in the store on Starrs Road,” Ware said, noting the one employee at the Main Street location will be moved to the Starrs Road location, which is connected to the Atlantic Superstore.
For decades prior to its current Main Street location, the NSLC was located at the corner of Main and Forest streets, in the building that now houses the Harbour South Medical Clinic. When the NSLC announced it was closing that location and moving to Starrs Road, there was a lot of public displeasure and anger expressed over the fact that there would not be a downtown location. A public argument at the time was that the NSLC was an anchor to the downtown.
Eventually the NSLC agreed to keep a downtown location that would also be within walking distance for people living close to the downtown core.
Asked if the Main Street store was seeing a lot of business, Ware said it wasn’t.
“It didn’t have a lot of customers. Our main store has been the one on Starrs Road. We have looked at the numbers very closely. All of our numbers are showing there isn’t much business done at that store,” she said.
The NSLC was leasing the building.
The NSLC store on Starrs Road, meanwhile, will be upgraded to a signature store.
Ware said signature stores have a specialty section called The Port that features premium wines and spirits that also include tasting stations. There will also be special, limited finds that you don’t have at normal NSLCs. And there will also be a product specialist in the store.
“We plan to begin the work to upgrade that store in the spring of 2018,” said Ware.