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New pop up space opens at Kitchener City Hall

The Kitchener City Hall ION LRT station on Duke Street West in front of city hall. Nick Westoll / File / Global News

A new pop-up space has opened at Kitchener City Hall which will allow local businesses a chance at a retail space in a prime location.

The space, which was formerly home to the Open Sesame store, is part of a pilot project called Project 220.

Over the next year, the city hopes it will be home to a variety of local shops, makers and artists as well as being an event space.

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“Conversations from our community consultations in 2016 had many people asking for more pop-up happenings, for the opportunity for new ideas and offerings to come into downtown,” Hilary Abel, manager of downtown community development said in a statement. “With downtown going through a huge transformation over the next few years, and more residents and workplaces finding their home here, it’s fun to see how this space might be able to respond to the community’s needs whether it be in playful art activations or business casual clothing.”

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The city hopes that the space will re-introduce shoppers to the downtown core.

“We’re excited to undertake this pilot so that we can explore what might be possible in this space long-term while helping our local entrepreneurs test Downtown Kitchener in a fairly low-risk way,” Cory Bluhm, executive director, economic development at the City of Kitchener, said.

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The space at 220 King Street West is already booked for most of the summer with the Summer Lights Festival being there on Saturday, followed by the Indigenous Art Market Kitchener (June 12-15) and then Art$pay will host a Pop-Up Gallery in the storefront during the True North DTK Festival.

On June 21, Four All Ice Cream Summer Pop Up will take over the space until September 6 alongside some special guests which will be announced in the near future.

The store will be opened Tuesday through Sunday from noon until 9 p.m.

If you are interested in finding out more about the space, you can visit: downtownkitchener.ca/Project220.

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