Taking advantage of growing retail and services spending, a number of national chains have located on the Sunshine Coast, including London Drugs and The Brick (in Gibsons), and Your Independent Grocer, IDA Rexall, and Canadian Tire (in Sechelt).
Lower Gibsons (“Gibsons Landing”) supports a charming, trendy business district with chic boutiques, galleries and restaurants that cater to both residents and tourists. Retail and food businesses in Gibsons Landing typically realize over half of their revenue from tourists. This arts and cultural hub is anchored by the Gibsons Public Market, where you can purchase produce, meat and fish, baked goods and chocolates. Stop in at the Marine Education Centre while you are there. The Market is linked to the main shopping precinct by a seawalk overlooking the harbour. Familiar to millions of viewers of CBC’s long-running “Beachcombers” (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Beachcombers) series, the Landing preserves a number of artifacts including the iconic ‘Persephone’ beachcombing boat, Molly’s Reach (mollysreach.ca) restaurant, and a permanent display at the Sunshine Coast Museum & Archives. Retail of office space is usually available in Lower Gibsons.
“Upper Gibsons” is the commercial centre of the Town. Park Plaza Mall recently completed renovations and further expansion is planned. Sunnycrest Mall continues to welcome new tenants, most recently a national pet supply chain. There are several smaller malls and multi-use buildings. Retail and office space are usually available in Upper Gibsons.
Sechelt boasts three major retail hubs and two industrial areas. Wilson Creek’s retail hub at Highway 101 and Field Road includes Canadian Tire, Haley GM, and Wilson Creek Plaza. Further up Field Road, clusters of light industrial complexes include manufacturing, repair and wholesale facilities. The airport (aerodrome) at the top of Field Road includes aircraft and helicopter transportation, service and repair. Davis Bay retail hub along Highway 101 focuses on the needs of visitors to the area, with restaurants, motels, a gallery and retail emporium. By far the largest retail and service hub on the Coast, Sechelt and the adjacent shíshálh Nation lands are where most retail, automotive service, government offices and health care providers are located. There are two large shopping malls: Tsain-ko Village at the south entrance to and Trail Bay Centre in central Sechelt.
Pender Harbour (Area A)
Pender Harbour has several small retail hubs. Madeira Park is the largest and includes an IGA grocery, Sunshine Coast Credit Union, BC Liquor Distribution outlet and various service businesses and coffee shops. There is a small mall at Francis Peninsula Road and Highway 101, anchored by a RONA building supply store. Kleindale (at Garden Bay Road and Highway 101, has primarily auto service and repair businesses. Egmont is served by a general store with beer, wine and liquor sales. A nearby bakery is open seasonally.
Halfmoon Bay (Area B)
Halfmoon Bay has no significant retail development. Two hubs, at Welcome Woods and Halfmoon Bay village, each host a general store with beer, wine and liquor sales.
Roberts Creek has a small, charming commercial centre (the Heart of the Creek) with commercial, retail and office space. The Inside Passage School of Fine Cabinetmaking, which attracts students from around the world, is located in Roberts Creek village, as is the locally popular Gumboot Café and Restaurant and Ambrosia Organic Living (health foods) and Elphinstone Cycles. Many other businesses operate from home offices and rural residential properties.
Elphinstone (Area E)
Elphinstone’s only retail development is on Pratt Road, near Highway 101 adjacent to Gibsons. Most Area E business owners in this hub opted out of the SCRD and successfully negotiated to amalgamate their properties with the Town of Gibsons. Three independent retail operations on Pratt Road opted to remain with the SCRD.
West Howe Sound (Area F)
Area F has no significant retail operation except Persephone Brewery and Farm, which is also light industrial. Virtually all business operations in Area F, including on Gambier and Keats Islands, are either home-based or industrial.
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