A new shopping experience inside Gatineau malls
GATINEAU, QC -- Shoppers in Gatineau got a first look at the new shopping experience Monday, as malls reopened in Quebec for the first time in months.
Malls have been closed because of the COVID-19 pandemic, but the Quebec government recently announced they could reopen as of Monday, June 1.
For Clare Dubeau, it's a change at Galeries Aylmer.
"It's a bit different," she tells CTV News. "It's weird because you look around and it's not the same at all. It's the same store but, I mean, it's empty."
Mall general manager Guy Leblanc says some former amenities, like seating, have been removed.
"There is no sitting area in the mall. We are making sure the merchants, the customers are safe," he said.
At Galeries de Hull, security guards are controlling the number of people inside and you have to wash your hands when you get inside. There are new one-way directional markings. Washrooms are getting enhanced cleaning and there's a limit to how many people can be inside at one time.
Not everything is opened yet, but mall staff say it's still good shopping.
The parking lot was not very full Monday afternoon, but there were a few Ontario plates spotted among the cars.
To date, shopping malls remain closed in Ontario. Some retail shops are allowed to be open, but they must have street-level entrances.