Shopping Centers Today

DEC 2016

Shopping Centers Today is the news magazine of the International Council of Shopping Centers (ICSC)

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Page 127 of 143

128 S C T / D E C E M B E R 2 0 1 6 of these is General Growth Properties' SoNo Collection, which is scheduled to open in 2018 or 2019. The SoNo Collection will encompass some 700,000 square feet of retail space, including anchor stores Nord- strom and Blooming- dale's and roughly 100 in-line stores, plus a 150-room boutique hotel and public space. The ground-breaking on this project, on a prime 12-acre site near the in- tersection of Interstate 95 and Route 7, is expected to take place by year-end. The approval process for the long-vacant site has taken roughly two years, but the project is so prominent that Mayor Harry Rilling had the developer install a 3-D model in the City Hall rotunda. Bloomingdale's and Nordstrom are the only stores of their type in Southern Connecticut, and both are keen to reach the area's growing num- bers of young families and single professionals. Fairfield County, of which Norwalk is a part, is home to one of the highest concentrations of wealth in the U.S., with one out of five house- holds ranking among the wealthiest 1 percent of Americans. Meanwhile, the long-stalled, $250 million Waypointe project is now on track: a three-phase, mixed-use development with 90,000 square feet of retail and restaurant space, including a Container Store, a Nordstrom Rack and an iPic Theater. Nearly 800 apartment units and 60,000 square feet of medical and office space will be part of the project as well. Norwalk is benefiting from the national trend that has been seeing developers choose to build in the denser urban areas. "It's a higher overall percentage of total development than it used to be, and it is the most sought-after today," said Ryan McCullough, senior real estate economist at CoStar Group. "There is a healthy appetite for ten- ants to be in that type of urban space." This is particularly true in Norwalk, according to Wickey. "You've gone from a no-anchored niche market to a very strongly anchored, multitown draw," Wickey said of SoNo. "It's totally different and just great to see. There's a sense of forward thinking and energy in Norwalk." n In the Southern New Hampshire market, which includes such cities as Nashua, Manchester and Salem, demolitions of old-outdated retail space are making way for newer, more vibrant tenants, notes to Burlington, Mass.–based Keypoint Partner's annual report on the region. Dallas-based developer Encore Commercial is converting a former Macy's store in Bedford, N.H., into a mixed-use property called Market and Main. Construction is expected to commence in 2017. A large portion of a former Lowe's Home Improvement store in Manchester is being converted into a 10-screen Chunky's theater. Meanwhile Dick's Sporting Goods added a new store in the former Sears anchor at The Mall at Rockingham Park. And developers are tearing down a former Market Basket grocery store at the Woodmont Commons redevelopment in Londonderry to accommodate more outparcels. Retail inventory in Southern New Hampshire included 29.8 million square feet in 2016, according to KeyPoint Partners' vice president of research Bob Sheehan. "This represents a modest decline of 0.4 percent, resulting largely from retail demolitions and conversions to non- retail space," he said. "There were significant new store additions, however, negating most of the reduction in square footage in the region." The SoNo Collection will encompass some 700,000 square feet of retail space, including anchor stores Nordstrom and Bloomingdale's and roughly 100 in-line stores, plus a 150-room boutique hotel and pub- lic space NEW RETAIL FOR NEW HAMPSHIRE S I T E S & C I T I E S

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