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"Critic claims mall hurts economy"
Calgary Herald
February 25, 1989
By Jeff Adams

EDMONTON - Bill Grosvenor is the albatross around Triple Five Corp.'s corporate neck.

The middle-aged former Briton is determined to drive Triple Five out of business, claiming its West Edmonton Mall has done irreparable damage to the local economy.

"Wherever I go, I warn the public of the harmful effect of Triple Five," says Grosvenor.

When a British TV crew came to town recently to see the mall and report on Triple Five's plans to build something similar in the north England city of Leeds, Grosvenor made sure everyone heard from him too.

And when a delegation of West Germans arrived last month for their own tour and to start negotiating construction of a mall and entertainment facility there, Grosvenor also gave them an unexpected earful.

He writes hundreds of letters to wherever Triple Five might do business. The campaign includes about 140,000 gummed labels printed to entreat people not to come to Edmonton or invest in any Triple Five project.

"Anything and everything I can get that makes Triple Five look bad, I mail it out," Grosvenor says. "I'll do everything I can within the law to put Triple Five out of business."

He points to a stack of mail on the other side of his living room, saying the letters are from overseas supporters of his anti-mall campaign. But Grosvenor refuses to open even one for examination by a reporter.

The self-described "militant" refuses to be photographed and says he can't reveal his business holdings because to do so would invite harassment by Triple Five.

Grosvenor says the concessions the City of Edmonton granted to Triple Five total millions of dollars.

Local residents and merchants are straining to pay for those concessions, he says, estimating property and business taxes have been tripled in recent years.

But a city official says property tax increases have matched inflation, while business taxes have either fallen or risen only slightly.

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