Shopping mall redevelopment and re-use projects are in planning or in active development throughout the U.S., and around the world. Retail malls (and their anchor retail tenants) were already threatened by changes in out-of-home versus online shopping behavior, well before the Covid-19 pandemic. The coronavirus has not only propelled these changes but caused new shopping sensibilities to emerge as lock-down and work-from-home orders persisted.
Depending upon local customer demand and interest from major new anchor tenants, shopping mall redevelopment is taking on a number of different approaches. All the approaches are founded on highest-and-best use considerations, beginning with the quality of location. In general, malls are well-located within their host communities and situated at well-trafficked streets and intersections.
Assuming a mall is well-located, the options for redevelopment or fuller adaptive re-use are numerous. Some of the typical re-use scenarios for shopping mall redevelopment and re-use include:
- Separate repurposing of a single major department store pad. Pembroke Lakes Mall (Florida) is an example, where the former Sears department store is to be converted to a Round One Entertainment Center.
- All or partial demolition of the existing mall to allow for a more vital mixed-use program to emerge. Elephant & Castle mall in the U.K. is an example, where the mall and surrounding area will be razed to make way for a new $3.5 billion regeneration project to emerge.
- All or partial demolition to allow for multi-family residential, whether ownership or rental. Multi-family residential, whether ownership, rental apartments, and/or a form of affordable housing, or all potential viable uses in such re-purposing.
- Re-leasing of anchor slots to major alternate users, such as health care, sports or fitness, or location-based entertainment. Other non-retail users are also interested in these anchor slots, including data center operators, online retailers needing “last mile” fulfillment, and so-called dark grocery stores and ghost kitchens.
- Complete re-tenanting of an existing mall through on major (new) anchor. IKEA’s acquisition of 945 Market Street (the 6X6 Building) in San Francisco is an example.
Shopping mall redevelopment and re-use projects are listed in the following exhibit, with some select details about the new program in consideration.
Our listing is under continuing editing – more projects and refined details, so check back here often. And please contact with major shopping centers in planning for such redevelopment; we’ll appreciate such tips!