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Gateway Towne Center: I-30 & I-430

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The Little Rock Planning Commission agenda for this Thursday (9/14/2006) lists a major project, entitled

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It's an admittedly odd location that's a bit surprising. Interstate access would be excellent, though. Aside from Otter Creek I think Southwest LR has become less and less desirable. However, the real market may be as much Bryant and Benton as Little Rock. Something like that could really spur development in the whole area.

I can see the need for a new area to put stores and restaurants aside from the typical West LR and McCain corridor locations. Baseline and I-30 was developing that way for a while but really never panned out and isn't a terrific area.

Thanks for posting this, it's very interesting. I look forward to hearing more about it.

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Wow, another large shopping center for Little Rock.

That makes quite a few for the area:

Shopps at North Hills (850,000 sq. feet)

Alcoa Exchange (300,000 sq. feet)

Shackleford Crossing (650,000 sq. feet)

Midtowne Little Rock (150,000 sq. feet)

Pleasant Ridge Towne Centre (300,000 sq. feet)

Promenade at Chenal (450,000 sq. feet)

Gateway Towne Center (800,000 sq. feet)

Plus the possible Villages at Brodie Creek (500,000 to 600,000 sq. feet)

When are you guys going to hit the saturation point?

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Wow, another large shopping center for Little Rock.

That makes quite a few for the area:

Shopps at North Hills (850,000 sq. feet)

Alcoa Exchange (300,000 sq. feet)

Shackleford Crossing (650,000 sq. feet)

Midtowne Little Rock (150,000 sq. feet)

Pleasant Ridge Towne Centre (300,000 sq. feet)

Promenade at Chenal (450,000 sq. feet)

Gateway Towne Center (800,000 sq. feet)

Plus the possible Villages at Brodie Creek (500,000 to 600,000 sq. feet)

When are you guys going to hit the saturation point?

The last three on your list are iffy and the timetable on them certainly might be pretty long.

The city has been in retail paralysis for years awaiting the results of the whole Summit Mall issue. When Simon finally lost that battle with the city it allowed Midtowne to be built. Now the other developers waiting to see how things played out can be sure about the locations where they chose to build. The city really is very short of retail space, especially since 550,000 SF of space at University Mall are almost completely empty or soon will be.

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I remember when they announced the Otter Creek Mall. It was to be over 1.1 million square feet. They even cleared the entire site TWICE during the '80's. It was only a matter of time before something was developed there. It is a prime visible location.

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It's an admittedly odd location that's a bit surprising. Interstate access would be excellent, though. Aside from Otter Creek I think Southwest LR has become less and less desirable. However, the real market may be as much Bryant and Benton as Little Rock. Something like that could really spur development in the whole area.

I can see the need for a new area to put stores and restaurants aside from the typical West LR and McCain corridor locations. Baseline and I-30 was developing that way for a while but really never panned out and isn't a terrific area.

Thanks for posting this, it's very interesting. I look forward to hearing more about it.

If the area was not that desirable I think Wal-Mart would not have expanded there, Home Depot, Applebee's and others would not have built there either. It's not the most prominant area of town, but I guess they saw something there in order to build. The area has retail that Midtown doesn't and I know part of that has to do with available land.

Depending on what type of stores are going to go in there, with Alcoa Exchange I don't know how much it will be able to pull out of Benton and Bryant.

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If the area was not that desirable I think Wal-Mart would not have expanded there, Home Depot, Applebee's and others would not have built there either. It's not the most prominant area of town, but I guess they saw something there in order to build. The area has retail that Midtown doesn't and I know part of that has to do with available land.

Depending on what type of stores are going to go in there, with Alcoa Exchange I don't know how much it will be able to pull out of Benton and Bryant.

I thought this was supposed to be a "lifestyle center". Alcoa Exchange doesn't have much in the way of upscale shops or restaurants, it's mostly a Target and Kohl's with a few odds and ends like Kirkland's and Shoe Carnival. Not only could it pull from Saline a bit but probably from Malvern, Arkadelphia, and Hot Springs as well if it had the right mix.

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I thought this was supposed to be a "lifestyle center".

To clarify, I don't know what type of retail development this will be, as there is no description on this week's agenda. The layout of the complex resembles something akin to a "lifestyle center," but until the developers make known their intentions, it's anyone's guess. As Aporkalypse mentioned, this one is still a long way from being developed, even if the planning commission approves the preliminary site plan in October.

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There's an article in Arkansas Business about this. It also has the site plan. I personally don't think it will happen. It's too big of a project with too many huge anchors (some 2 story) for that area.

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Prelimi-nary site plans include accommodations for an unnamed, two-level 200,000-SF anchor in the lifestyle center. I hope this isn't another Dillards, but the nice location at Park Plaza and the proposed on at the Promenade seem like enough to me in Little Rock. This is obviously going to be a deparment store, or possibly something like Dick's Sporting Goods.

Other components on the drawing board of the lifestyle center include a 50,000-SF anchor, junior anchors totaling 74,000 SF with 254,300 SF divvied up among smaller shops and restaurants, and parking for 4,362 vehicles.

I am hearing a lot of interest from Dillards on this project, but I would like to see a Macy's. Macy's has mentioned it would be in 46 or 48 states within a few years, since it's practically converting all stores (Foley's, Famous Barr, Kaufmann's, Filene's, etc) to Macy's.

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Prelimi-nary site plans include accommodations for an unnamed, two-level 200,000-SF anchor in the lifestyle center. I hope this isn't another Dillards, but the nice location at Park Plaza and the proposed on at the Promenade seem like enough to me in Little Rock. This is obviously going to be a deparment store, or possibly something like Dick's Sporting Goods.

Other components on the drawing board of the lifestyle center include a 50,000-SF anchor, junior anchors totaling 74,000 SF with 254,300 SF divvied up among smaller shops and restaurants, and parking for 4,362 vehicles.

I am hearing a lot of interest from Dillards on this project, but I would like to see a Macy's. Macy's has mentioned it would be in 46 or 48 states within a few years, since it's practically converting all stores (Foley's, Famous Barr, Kaufmann's, Filene's, etc) to Macy's.

I would be surprised if Dillard's located there in that as some have mentioned, that's not the hottest growth area of Little Rock (like it was in the early to mid 80's). However, geographically, that location would be the best option of many so as to mitigate the impact on the Park Plaza location. Another similar location that would also minimize impact on Park Plaza would be an I-40/I-430/Maumelle development. If Dillard's had located at the planned Summit Mall, it would have been disastrous for Park Plaza as it would have been literally a 5-minute freeway hop down I-630.

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I would be surprised if Dillard's located there in that as some have mentioned, that's not the hottest growth area of Little Rock (like it was in the early to mid 80's). However, geographically, that location would be the best option of many so as to mitigate the impact on the Park Plaza location. Another similar location that would also minimize impact on Park Plaza would be an I-40/I-430/Maumelle development. If Dillard's had located at the planned Summit Mall, it would have been disastrous for Park Plaza as it would have been literally a 5-minute freeway hop down I-630.

Dillard's could draw those from Benton and Bryant as well as Otter Creek and other parts of west Little Rock. I don't think that a Dillard's there would have any long term effects on the Dillard's at Park Plaza. Having Midtowne across the street is going to help Park Plaza.

It would be nice if Macy's located there. Little Rock needs another department store to compete with Dillard's since Parisian's will no longer exist.

Edited by theman

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Dillard's could draw those from Benton and Bryant as well as Otter Creek and other parts of west Little Rock. I don't think that a Dillard's there would have any long term effects on the Dillard's at Park Plaza. Having Midtowne across the street is going to help Park Plaza.

It would be nice if Macy's located there. Little Rock needs another department store to compete with Dillard's since Parisian's will no longer exist.

Rumor is Dillard's is behind this which is why they pulled out of the Promenade at Chenal. This also would explain Herring's involvement and RED's involvement as well. We'll see how things pan out but I wouldn't bet against it happening.

I want to see a Macy's/Foley's as well. If this development goes down as planned there won't be another new mall coming soon. Maybe it's the dept store planned for Shoppes at North Hills and it would be a good bet for a new center where University Mall stands if that ever happens.

I don't see why this would hurt Dillard's current location that much. The Park Plaza store is the top grossing store in the entire chain of 350 or so and it's smack dab in the middle of the city. I think Dillard's will need a new location in West/SW LR to make their wares more accessible.

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Rumor is Dillard's is behind this which is why they pulled out of the Promenade at Chenal. This also would explain Herring's involvement and RED's involvement as well. We'll see how things pan out but I wouldn't bet against it happening.

I want to see a Macy's/Foley's as well. If this development goes down as planned there won't be another new mall coming soon. Maybe it's the dept store planned for Shoppes at North Hills and it would be a good bet for a new center where University Mall stands if that ever happens.

I don't see why this would hurt Dillard's current location that much. The Park Plaza store is the top grossing store in the entire chain of 350 or so and it's smack dab in the middle of the city. I think Dillard's will need a new location in West/SW LR to make their wares more accessible.

Aporkalypse/TheMan....I can't tell from your responses if you misunderstood my point, but yes, I agree. My point was that this SW location would be much better for the viability of Park Plaza than the original Summit Mall (Shackelfor Crossing) site. In fact, I think its much better than the Promenade at Chenal (better for Park Plaza - not sure if its better for Dillards).

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Aporkalypse/TheMan....I can't tell from your responses if you misunderstood my point, but yes, I agree. My point was that this SW location would be much better for the viability of Park Plaza than the original Summit Mall (Shackelfor Crossing) site. In fact, I think its much better than the Promenade at Chenal (better for Park Plaza - not sure if its better for Dillards).

I wasn't really directing that at you, it was more of a general point. I agree that this will have less of an impact on Park Plaza than the Summit Mall. I feel very comfortable with where Park Plaza will be in ten years now that it is being renovated and Midtowne is being built.

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I wasn't really directing that at you, it was more of a general point. I agree that this will have less of an impact on Park Plaza than the Summit Mall. I feel very comfortable with where Park Plaza will be in ten years now that it is being renovated and Midtowne is being built.

No doubt! I don't think that 2 years ago we could have envisioned the outlook that Park Plaza and mid-town in general now have. The best possible scenario has occured, which is that not only did Summit not happen (and I was ambivalent about that to be honest...at least the arguements against it were illogical regarding traffic, etc...), but that the most upscale development in Arkansas is being constructed across the street AND Park Plaza has embarked upon a very attractive, multi-million dollor renovation which will lead to its own renaissance (and new tenants!)!

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No doubt! I don't think that 2 years ago we could have envisioned the outlook that Park Plaza and mid-town in general now have. The best possible scenario has occured, which is that not only did Summit not happen (and I was ambivalent about that to be honest...at least the arguements against it were illogical regarding traffic, etc...), but that the most upscale development in Arkansas is being constructed across the street AND Park Plaza has embarked upon a very attractive, multi-million dollor renovation which will lead to its own renaissance (and new tenants!)!

It wasn't that long ago everyone was afraid that when Summit opened and University closed Park Plaza would close as well if Dillard's moved and leave the whole corridor empty. That could really have had some adverse effects on Hillcrest and the Heights as well as more middle class neighborhoods like Leawood and Tanglewood. It was a good thing the Summit Mall never came to fruition, though I have to admit not having a single large shopping center with a big variety of stores is a problem in Little Rock. If all of that had happened, though, I think that area we now call Midtown would've been lost. Now it not only is doing well but has the potential to be something really special, a nidus for growth.

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It wasn't that long ago everyone was afraid that when Summit opened and University closed Park Plaza would close as well if Dillard's moved and leave the whole corridor empty. That could really have had some adverse effects on Hillcrest and the Heights as well as more middle class neighborhoods like Leawood and Tanglewood. It was a good thing the Summit Mall never came to fruition, though I have to admit not having a single large shopping center with a big variety of stores is a problem in Little Rock. If all of that had happened, though, I think that area we now call Midtown would've been lost. Now it not only is doing well but has the potential to be something really special, a nidus for growth.

Ditto, especially your comment regarding the problem with not having one big development. Even Midtowne is really too small (limited by available area) to have a real signfiicant presence or even impact on the market. The result of Summit failing - while greatly benefiting the midtown area - has resulted in extensive fracturing of retailers. Quite frankly, they're unsure where to go with all of the mid-size, mid-market options. This has been said before, but the opposite of what's happened here in Little Rock is the Jordan Creek Town Center in Des Moines, who's sheer size has attracted some very high profile outlets such as Apple, Cheesecake Factory, etc. that LR is unlikely to get without such a large - "go-to" development that would ensure very high volumes of traffic.

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Ditto, especially your comment regarding the problem with not having one big development. Even Midtowne is really too small (limited by available area) to have a real signfiicant presence or even impact on the market. The result of Summit failing - while greatly benefiting the midtown area - has resulted in extensive fracturing of retailers. Quite frankly, they're unsure where to go with all of the mid-size, mid-market options. This has been said before, but the opposite of what's happened here in Little Rock is the Jordan Creek Town Center in Des Moines, who's sheer size has attracted some very high profile outlets such as Apple, Cheesecake Factory, etc. that LR is unlikely to get without such a large - "go-to" development that would ensure very high volumes of traffic.

I still think there's potential for a mixed use development at the University site that could compliment Park Plaza and Midtowne. If Macy's wants to get into Arkansas that's the prime location and if LR is ever going to get places like the Cheesecake Factory or Houston's that's where they would go. National chain restaurants are really pretty absent from that area because there's nowhere for them to go. Target, a movie theatre, and bookstore should be part of that as well. If the city really pushed some of the ideas about infrastructure improvement there and linked the developments with bridges it could create a unique shopping district on 3 corners. Development could eventually spread to the area where Sears is now located. and up (and down)University to create more of a retail corridor than currently exists.

With UAMS and St Vincent's expanding and a new vision for War Memorial that could really rejuvenate the area. I think that would boost property values not only in the Heights and Hillcrest but also in nearby neighborhoods like Leawood and the Boyle Park and Fair Park neighborhoods south of the freeway.

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Ditto, especially your comment regarding the problem with not having one big development. Even Midtowne is really too small (limited by available area) to have a real signfiicant presence or even impact on the market. The result of Summit failing - while greatly benefiting the midtown area - has resulted in extensive fracturing of retailers. Quite frankly, they're unsure where to go with all of the mid-size, mid-market options. This has been said before, but the opposite of what's happened here in Little Rock is the Jordan Creek Town Center in Des Moines, who's sheer size has attracted some very high profile outlets such as Apple, Cheesecake Factory, etc. that LR is unlikely to get without such a large - "go-to" development that would ensure very high volumes of traffic.

We still don't know what the mix is going to be a Shackleford Crossing. That is the largest retail development happening in Little Rock now. It may draw the Cheesecake Factory's, Apple's and others on all of our wish lists.

Also, don't forget if the NLR development ever comes to fruitions, they may locate their. With an anchor like Bass Pro, that would be a big draw.

I'm glad that Midtowne was developed and Park Plaza is going through its renovations. The University Mall site needs to be redeveloped as retail that can compliment Midtowne and Park Plaza. Also more restaurants need to be located in the area as well.

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If the University location is ever re-developed into something that people actually walk into on purpose, I wonder if the city will build any kind of pedestrian walk way between the three retail developments. Right now you'd have to cross a very busy 4/5 lanes of traffic to get from one shopping center to another. I would think Parking and re-parking would be quite a hassle compared to just walking and avoid the traffic and stop lights. Especially during the busy seasons.

Edited by Cru Jones

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We still don't know what the mix is going to be a Shackleford Crossing. That is the largest retail development happening in Little Rock now. It may draw the Cheesecake Factory's, Apple's and others on all of our wish lists.

Also, don't forget if the NLR development ever comes to fruitions, they may locate their. With an anchor like Bass Pro, that would be a big draw.

I'm glad that Midtowne was developed and Park Plaza is going through its renovations. The University Mall site needs to be redeveloped as retail that can compliment Midtowne and Park Plaza. Also more restaurants need to be located in the area as well.

If Shackleford really includes a Babies-R-Us and Wal-Mart, it's not the kind of development that could lure in the Cheesecake Factory or Applebee's. I would guess Promenade at Chenal will be too small to pull these off but I would think it would have a better chance. We don't know enough about Gateway Towne Centre to get a feel for its tenant mix yet.

I agree about the restaurants. That's the central part of the city and is a reasonable drive from the entire city and much of the metro. It's a prime location for chain restaurants, I would think. I'm glad Pei Wei is going into Midtowne. I guess Cantina Laredo isn't happening, I heard they were coming early on but not much since.

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If Shackleford really includes a Babies-R-Us and Wal-Mart, it's not the kind of development that could lure in the Cheesecake Factory or Applebee's. I would guess Promenade at Chenal will be too small to pull these off but I would think it would have a better chance. We don't know enough about Gateway Towne Centre to get a feel for its tenant mix yet.

I agree about the restaurants. That's the central part of the city and is a reasonable drive from the entire city and much of the metro. It's a prime location for chain restaurants, I would think. I'm glad Pei Wei is going into Midtowne. I guess Cantina Laredo isn't happening, I heard they were coming early on but not much since.

I could see an Applebee's at a Wal-Mart development, they're very popular. As well, expect fast food restaurants.

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We still don't know what the mix is going to be a Shackleford Crossing. That is the largest retail development happening in Little Rock now. It may draw the Cheesecake Factory's, Apple's and others on all of our wish lists.

Also, don't forget if the NLR development ever comes to fruitions, they may locate their. With an anchor like Bass Pro, that would be a big draw.

I'm glad that Midtowne was developed and Park Plaza is going through its renovations. The University Mall site needs to be redeveloped as retail that can compliment Midtowne and Park Plaza. Also more restaurants need to be located in the area as well.

I know the developer, and he clearly defined Shackleford Crossing as a "Power Center" - such that this is more mainstream, mid-tier, large box retail. I gathered that there was competition with Pleasant Ridge over tenants, which ultimately determined which was "lifestyle" and which was "power center." Expect some fairly nice tenants, but not Cheesecake Factory, Apple, etc. (as an aside, if Apple doesn't land at Midtowne or Park Plaza, don't expect them in this market at all unfortunately).

If Shackleford really includes a Babies-R-Us and Wal-Mart, it's not the kind of development that could lure in the Cheesecake Factory or Applebee's. I would guess Promenade at Chenal will be too small to pull these off but I would think it would have a better chance. We don't know enough about Gateway Towne Centre to get a feel for its tenant mix yet.

I agree about the restaurants. That's the central part of the city and is a reasonable drive from the entire city and much of the metro. It's a prime location for chain restaurants, I would think. I'm glad Pei Wei is going into Midtowne. I guess Cantina Laredo isn't happening, I heard they were coming early on but not much since.

I've been told that Promenade at Chenal is on triple-life support, if not dead already.

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