A new program being rolled out by Loblaw this spring will allow commuters pick up pre-ordered groceries at five GO Transit stations across the Greater Toronto Area.
Online orders that are placed by midnight will be ready for pick-up the next day on the homebound commute.
Loblaw Companies Limited, Canada’s largest retailer, has partnered with Metrolinx, a provincial government transit agency, to deliver the program to busy commuters who use the Bronte, Oakville, Rouge Hill, Whitby, and Clarkson stations.
The program is expected to expand in phases to additional stations in the future.
“This is a logical extension of our increasingly popular e-commerce services, and the growing customer appeal for ordering groceries online and picking them up when it’s most convenient,” Jeremy Pee, Loblaw’s senior vice-president of e-commerce, said in a press release.
The new service is an extension of the company’s click-and-collect model, where customers can already order online and pick up in a growing list of more than 200 stores nationwide.
The groceries will come from nearby Fortinos or Loblaw stores, depending on the location, and will be waiting in a special delivery truck, in lockers, or in an enclosed kiosk for the commuter to pick-up.
“Our customers lead busy lives and this exciting new service—a first in Canada—will make their trips home that much quicker,” Phil Verster, president and CEO of Metrolinx, said in the release.
“There will now be a new benefit to taking the GO train, with the ability to pick up groceries at five different stations through Loblaw’s PC Express pick-up service, with more to come.”
Metrolinx spokesperson Anne Marie Aikens told the Toronto Star that the transit agency hopes the new service will boost ridership.
“The more convenient we make transit the more likely people are to use it,” she said.
According to the Star, Loblaw is investing more in technology this year in the rush to compete with Amazon, which last year purchased Whole Foods, including its 13 Canadian locations. The move prompted speculation that the retail giant may be planning to grow its grocery delivery service north of the border.
Construction at the five stations is set to start on March 5.