Christian Chia says the current time is an “exciting new era” for Porsche in British Columbia.

Chia is chief executive officer of OpenRoad Auto Group, and he said in a news release that the news of OpenRoad and Dilawri Group of Companies partnering with Porsche Cars Canada to bring a new Porsche center to Richmond by late 2020 means that the new location “will embody the very essence of the Porsche brand.”

OpenRoad and Dilawri announced the plans and partnership last week during a groundbreaking ceremony marking the official start of construction for Porsche Centre Richmond at the Richmond Auto Mall. OpenRoad and Dilawri both currently own and operate existing Vancouver-area Porsche centers.

Porsche Centre Richmond will be the third and largest Porsche center in the Vancouver area. It will be jointly owned and operated through a partnership between OpenRoad Auto Group and Dilawri Group of Companies.

OpenRoad’s Porsche Centre Langley and Dilawri’s Porsche Centre Vancouver have both received the Porsche Canada Premier Dealership Award for industry excellence.

Following the groundbreaking ceremony, stakeholders were able to see an unveiling of the all-electric Porsche Taycan at the recently opened Porsche Now Richmond pop-up location at Aberdeen Square.

At that unveiling, guests saw the new storefront that the companies say offers “an immersive Porsche experience” that features what the companies say is the world’s first Porsche Now pop-up design concept. The companies say Porsche Now Richmond is the first retail outlet in the world to display the new Porsche Now design concept recently introduced in Stuttgart, Germany.

The new retail concept features amenities with a design center offering Porsche Exclusive Manufaktur items where customers can personalize their Porsche in a configuration lounge. Also, a Porsche Augmented Reality visualizer allows clients to experience their dream Porsche anytime, anywhere.

Guests also saw Canada’s only Porsche Design lifestyle accessories shop.

Chia, along with Porsche Cars Canada president and chief executive officer Marc Ouayoun, and Dilawri Group of Companies principal director Ajay Dilawri, unveiled plans for the new 75,000-square-foot retail and service center.

The center will feature a new and pre-owned showroom, a service and parts area with 15 service bays, a service drive-through, and specialized delivery area.

Porsche Centre Richmond will include a 20-car showroom and two new vehicle delivery areas.

The new center will employ a staff of about 40 sales, service, management and administration employees. Wales McLelland is constructing the multimillion-dollar Porsche AG -designed project.

“We’re continuing to see demand for new and used Porsche cars in British Columbia so when the opportunity came up for another sales and service center, Richmond was a natural choice based on its central location and high concentration of Porsche owners,” Dilawri said in a news release. “We’re confident in our partnership with OpenRoad and the future of Porsche Centre Richmond. We look forward to opening the doors in late 2020.”