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PghUSA

Pittsburgh Retailer searches for new HQ site.

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Currently headquarted in a business park/warehouse district in the city's northern suburbs American Eagle Outfitters has outgrown its digs and its expansion space (they have taken over many of the neighboring complexes when they needed more space) and is ready for a signature HQ space/display window to the world. It was rumored a few years back that they were interested in setting up shop on the northshore by the Warhol gallery, Pirates ballpark and Heinz Field along with Alcoa's World HQ (World's largest Aluminium Co.), DelMonte's Eastern Corporate HQ and Equitable Gas HQ there. Stock valuations and a slump in retail made it bide its time. Today both the northshore and a downtown office tower are the lead candidates but AEO might build a sprawling suburban campus from the ground up (unlike its current ad-hoc digs) at a interstate highway junction (similar to Bayer North America HQ, SKGlaxo Consumer NA HQ or FedEx Ground World HQ's out by the Airport). Interested in seeing how this develops.

WARRENDALE -- American Eagle Outfitters Inc. has begun to shop the Pittsburgh-area real estate market for new headquarters space.

"As part of our long-term strategic growth plans, we will need to expand our headquarters," Jim O'Donnell, CEO of the Warrendale-based clothing retailer, said in a written statement to the Business Times. "We are currently looking at several different options, which are all located in the Pittsburgh area. We are absolutely committed to Pittsburgh, and look forward to continuing American Eagle's growth and success is this region." . . .

http://www.bizjournals.com/pittsburgh/stor.../16/story1.html

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I would like to see them chose Downtown or the North Shore. It would be good for the city, and I feel that a trendy store fits better in an urban setting than by a highway. They'll probably chose the suburbs though, because of cost. Sigh.

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I would like to see them chose Downtown or the North Shore. It would be good for the city, and I feel that a trendy store fits better in an urban setting than by a highway. They'll probably chose the suburbs though, because of cost. Sigh.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

I agree. On one hand, I want to see downtown improve its vacancy rate. On the other hand, AE won't have any visible presence in one of those buildings - unless the put up a sign... which would only work on some buildings. Which at this point, I have to add my frustration to Highmark for ruining one of the sharpest towers in the city with that damn sign. I don't oppose signs, but the belong on buildings where it doesn't take away from the design. Ughhh.

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^^downtown vacancy rates should get a huge boost if they move downtown, I'd love to see that but I think what they are going for is a signature space one that they can design from the ground up, doable downtown but much more expensive on the renovations etc.

Downtown or the Northshore would be perfect for them to have a working and retailing HQ, one that is not only excutive suites but opens out towards the world and lets people walk in and have the "AEO Experience". That is the drift I get from reading about what they are looking for.

those comments about the former 5th Avenue Place are funny, Highmark is trying so hard to do well at marketing themselves. lol

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I wonder if the old Lazarus building Downtown would be enough space for American Eagle's headquarters?

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

Good thought, but I think someone is negotiating to buy that building, so it may not be available. GOOD idea though.

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Good thought, but I think someone is negotiating to buy that building, so it may not be available. GOOD idea though.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

According to one of the papers (I forget but it was this week) they are very close to finishing the deal and will be as proposed - mix of residential, retail and I belive office as well. I really didn't think the building was big enough to accomodate all of those components, but anything will be an improvement...

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Update, AEO has chosen the new southside works entertainment/corporate center on the southshore of the Monongahela for its new global headquarters! This is great news for the city, although I would have preferred the AE HQ being placed between PNC Park and Heinz Field (all those young out of towners coming next summer for the All Star Game could have walked by the "American Eagle Outfitters Global HQ" and would have had another "hip" reason to change the false stereotypes about the 'burgh. ;).

Here is the story, still a major plus!

http://www.bizjournals.com/pittsburgh/stor...y25.html?page=3

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Update, AEO has chosen the new southside works entertainment/corporate center on the southshore of the Monongahela for its new global headquarters! This is great news for the city, although I would have preferred the AE HQ being placed between PNC Park and Heinz Field (all those young out of towners coming next summer for the All Star Game could have walked by the "American Eagle Outfitters Global HQ" and would have had another "hip" reason to change the false stereotypes about the 'burgh. ;).

Here is the story, still a major plus!

http://www.bizjournals.com/pittsburgh/stor...y25.html?page=3

Oh man, I had this deal down cold. I thought "They're gonna choose SSW, it's a no-brainer" as soon as I started reading this thread! It's already got pretty much the nicest looking store they own and an environment full of some of the most prestigious clothing retailers in our region. Plus I don't think there will be any shortage of out-of-towners coming to SSW in the coming years. It will serve them a lot better than a bunch of tailgaters in a parking lot who aren't interested in clothing that isn't black and gold.

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I think it's a good choice. The SouthSide Works probably is a big draw for out of towners, and will be more so once the hotel is built.

Maybe some of the visitors for the All-Star Game will even head over there. Ooo, I hope they take advantage of the water taxis...

At any rate, I am thrilled they had the good sense to select an urban setting. This could bring hundreds of jobs into the city!

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This is probably going to make traffic on E. Carson even more of a disaster. But quite frankly, I don't give a damn. I think this is an awesome move. and the city can certainly use the extra $50,000 in wage taxes plus all the new sales tax revenue just from having all those people eating lunch at south side works. Yeah, it would have been cool if AE had built the "third" building on the north shore, but Grubb&Ellis and CBRE are having a hell of a time filling the buildings that are already up.

Pittsburgh needs to stop looking only at the strength of the office market "Downtown". If this were Cleveland the new AE move would be downtown, just not in the central buisness district. If you take into account the strength of the market in Oakland, South Side, and (to a lesser degree) the North shore...office vacancy in the central core doesn't look so bad after all!

Now lets see if we can get the GAP Co's and Abercrombie to move to the south side too!!!!!!!

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I think a move to the city is a plus, but I don't think that SSW is the best location. As mentioned, E Carson can't support the traffic. More significantly, downtown has a vacancy of 20% and at least the North Shore is more adjacent to DT and more visible (if they had a nice sign go up etc.).

Oh well, at least they are in the city.

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Biz Journal is reporting that AE will most likely also relocate the retail lab from up north closer into the city. Probably in SSW itself. The most available space is in the third building(next to REI), but they only need about 12,000

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^^good point tooluther, AE (thou I did call them Cheesy lol) could do much to boost the image of the SSW by moving all major ops to the site.

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