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BosTech

St. Johns Town Center open

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BosTech    0

Business begins at St. Johns Town Center

By BILL BORTZFIELD

Jacksonville.com

While construction continues, business is already underway at the St. Johns Town Center in Southside Jacksonville.

Jo-Ann Fabrics & Crafts, is already open for business, with a grand opening scheduled on February 17.

Construction continues on The Cheesecake Fatory and Barnes & Noble Booksellers at The St. Johns Town Center.

Phase one of the center, which is under construction at Butler Boulevard and St. Johns Bluff Road/Florida 9A, is scheduled to open March 18.

The Times-Union has reported that the first phase of St. Johns Town Center will feature more than 100 stores, including a flagship, 240,000-square-foot Dillard's department store as well as the city's first Dick's Sporting Goods, DSW Shoe Warehouse, The Cheesecake Factory, P.F. Chang's China Bistro and Maggiano's Little Italy.

More than 30 of the first-phase stores and restaurants are new to Jacksonville.

Once the first phase opens in March, work is expected to begin on phase two.

The Florida Times-Union has reported that several upscale stores such as Nordstrom, Saks Fifth Avenue and Macy's are considering building at the St. Johns Town Center, although nothing official has been announced.

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Anyone have any pictures?

The photos in the times union paint a pretty medicore picture. I know some people have problems with "lifestyle centers" but this doesn't even look like one! It looks a whole lot more like a regular strip mall!

joann.jpg

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Architecturally, it looks very pretty for a strip mall, and I would have been thrilled with it all things considered ... except the developers set my hopes high by calling it a mixed use lifestyle center. Those are two totally different things.

Oh well.

If it has a Cheesecake Factory, I'll eventually go there. And so will everyone else in Jacksonville. The developers probably know that too. ;)

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bobliocatt    0

Its actually a lifestyle center with a power center attached to it. JoAnn Fabrics is apart of the power center that also features a Target, DSW Shoes, Ross and Ashley Furniture store. I drove through it last week and to tell you the truth, the lifestyle portion of it doesn't look to bad. I'll look around a little later and post the site plan I have of it.

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BosTech    0

Half of it looks like regular strip mall and other half where are resturants looks lie little town,sort of reminds me of my home city downtown, where most likely you could park car and walk...Technicaly you could park car and start walking from one end to another passing all stores and end up in some resturant later.

I didn't see "back buildings" up close but seem to me that Dick's buidling looks very nice and modern,I like the way they put it behind "old style"...Looks interesting to see mall and then that budiling in back.

I'll try to snap some pictures when I get my camera working.

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BosTech    0

Whole mall is HUGE so you have to see it in full glory,on second picture is where "center" is budlings on both sides of street,not sure if they will allow traffic in between but it will still look cool and most likely will be filled with people on streets,plus they gonna build second phase so it will be nice looking little town,not perfect but still very good place to go out.

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bobliocatt    0

Just north of Dick's Sporting Goods, there is a large multi-family residential complex going up, as well as a Homewood Suites Hotel. I have no doubt that this project will be a success. However, keep in mind, a lifestyle center is nothing more than a 21st century suburban shopping mall.

Yes, the stores line a "traditional" looking main street (an enclosed mall's version of the central shopping corridor), but its still surrounded by a large asphalt covered parking lot, with several outparcels for chain restaurants lining a wide six lane boulevard.

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wolfdawg54    0

Awesome news and the area that the center is in is very suburban. I wish that it was built closer to downtown but oh well. The area will be neat and hopefully most of the big-time tenants will eventually move in soon.

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....but its still surrounded by a large asphalt covered parking lot, with several outparcels for chain restaurants lining a wide six lane boulevard.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

How appealing! :silly:

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wolfdawg54    0

What I am hoping is that some of the big-name chain, high quality department stores will be successful there and will open stores up closer to the downtown area as well. That would be really neat.

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JaxNole    0

I didn't think much of the pictures, but then I drove by and more of an appreciation of it. You can access the area from northbound Gate Pkwy or from southbound St. Johns Bluff, turning right just after the intersection with Central Pkwy.

A six lane road with dual left turn lanes surrounds much of the site. This may be just a reinvention of an enclosed mall, but with it comes retailers new to the area. Additionally, there is some hope we'll have not only new merchants, but upscale ones with the second phase. Maybe commitments will be made once numbers start coming in after the opening of the first phase in March.

I don't know why, but Simon had site elevation plans on its website, but recently removed them. Once the second phase is completed, there is still more land that can be developed. The demographic study provided favorable numbers to lure the likes of Nordstrom to the Town Center. Ponte Vedra is a short, though harrowing, drive as will Julington Creek be once 9A becomes 295. Deerwood, Deercreek, Jacksonville Golf and Country Club and numerous others are already within minutes from this location.

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wolfdawg54    0

It definitely is a prime location for the beaches community and south Jacksonville. I think that you can expect more hotels in the area as well because with the new mall and offices in the area. Sprawl will continue to happen by JTB.

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afh    0

It definitely is a prime location for the beaches community and south Jacksonville. I think that you can expect more hotels in the area as well because with the new mall and offices in the area. Sprawl will continue to happen by JTB.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

Well, as far as hotels go, Sheraton is building a hotel off of Gate Parkway and the hotel will include a Shula's Steakhouse (just what Jax needs, more steakhouse :o ). I believe that the hotel will be completed in the first part of 2006, according to the TU.

Phase two of SJTC is what everyone is really waiting for. Simon is actively working on that portion and from what I read in the Business Journal in August, Boney Paisley mentioned that Simon is in negotiations with all of the upscale anchors that have been mentioned. It takes about 8 months to a year to complete lease negotiations but hopefully there will be some news later in the year. I would look for a Fall of 2007 opening for the second phase if the deals can be completed.

What I think will happen, and it could or couldn't happen, is that Phase 2 of SJTC will include Neiman's and Nordstrom as anchors. The Avenues Mall, owned by Simon will get Macy's and Saks. Remember, Dillards will have to close their store at the Avenues b/c the new one at SJTC will be about twice as large. Look at what Dillards did when they opened their store at International Plaza in Tampa.

Dillards moves out of the Avenues and Simon has to fill that spot. I believe that negotiations are taking place between Federated, owners of Burdines-Macy and Simon. With Federated openly expressing their interest in opening multiple stores in Jax, I see no reason why a deal wouldn't be completed. Secondly, since Simon could include Saks at the Avenues b/c the current plans for the 2nd phase of SJTC showed space for only two department stores, one 160,000 sf (the majority of Nordstrom's stores are 160,000 sf) and a 80,000 sf store. A rep from Simon did mention that there is room for 3 anchors at SJTC. You have the take into consider that Simon has a relationship with Saks and the fact that Simon is trying to push the Avenues more upmarket so that SJTC doesn't siphone customers from it. Therefore, it is plausible that Saks would go into the Parisan space at the Avenues. Saks owns Parisians and it would cost them little to nothing to renovate the space. Which is exactly what they did at the Florida Mall in Orlando, which is owned by Simon.

In retail, relationships between mall owners, especially ones the size of Simon and large tenants like Saks is important when it comes to negotations.

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wolfdawg54    0

Thanks for the new updates on the hotels in the area and the scoop on the new retail stores moving in. The big chains as I had said should open more than one store in Jacksonville. I am hoping that they will visit the downtown area or even Regency.

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bobliocatt    0

What I think will happen, and it could or couldn't happen, is that Phase 2 of SJTC will include Neiman's and Nordstrom as anchors.  The Avenues Mall, owned by Simon will get Macy's and Saks.  Remember, Dillards will have to close their store at the Avenues b/c the new one at SJTC will be about twice as large.  Look at what Dillards did when they opened their store at International Plaza in Tampa. 

Dillards moves out of the Avenues and Simon has to fill that spot.  I believe that  negotiations are taking place between Federated, owners of Burdines-Macy and Simon.  With Federated openly expressing their interest in opening multiple stores in Jax, I see no reason why a deal wouldn't be completed.  Secondly, since Simon could include Saks at the Avenues b/c the current plans for the 2nd phase of SJTC showed space for only two department stores, one 160,000 sf (the majority of Nordstrom's stores are 160,000 sf) and a 80,000 sf store.  A rep from Simon did mention that there is room for 3 anchors at SJTC.  You have the take into consider that Simon has a relationship with Saks and the fact that Simon is trying to push the Avenues more upmarket so that SJTC doesn't siphone customers from it.  Therefore, it is plausible that Saks would go into the Parisan space at the Avenues.  Saks owns Parisians and it would cost them little to nothing to renovate the space.  Which is exactly what they did at the Florida Mall in Orlando, which is owned by Simon.

In retail, relationships between mall owners, especially ones the size of Simon and large tenants like Saks is important when it comes to negotations.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

I think the three stores previously mentioned as potential anchors, for the past couple of years, will sign on the become a part of Phase II. I also believe I read a while back that Dillards doesn't plan to close any local stores when the new one opens. Looking at the tenant mix, The Avenue's appears to be safe as well, since most retailers & restaurants at the SJTC will be new to the area.

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mwfsu84    0

I live in Atlanta now, and live just a few miles away from the Maggiano's in Buckhead. You folks down there are going to love it. We've got a Cheesecake Factory in Buckhead too, though I've never visited it. I've noticed it does atrract long lines over the weekends.

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JaxNole    0

Yeah, Cheesecake Factory and the other restaurants will be welcome additions to Jacksonville. It certainly helps that it will be across from UNF's campus. When I have a long break between classes, I go off campus for something to eat, but there's not too great of a selection outside the typical chain fast food places. I can't wait for everything to be open. I drive by SJTC daily now trying to see up close incremental progress.

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wolfdawg54    0

I live in Atlanta now, and live just a few miles away from the Maggiano's in Buckhead.  You folks down there are going to love it.      We've got a Cheesecake Factory in Buckhead too, though I've never visited it.  I've noticed it does atrract long lines over the weekends.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

Buckhead really has some amazing malls that are clean and upscale. Jacksonville needs to look at Atlanta's Buckhead area to really see how to make a mall successful and nice.

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scongro    0

In my opinion, I really don't want a buckhead. Not that I don't want everything that a buckhead has to offer, but the folks up in Atlanta managed to create a new entertainment district well outside of downtown. I really hope that St Johns Town Center doesn't turn into that.

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JaxNole    0

Buckhead really has some amazing malls that are clean and upscale. Jacksonville needs to look at Atlanta's Buckhead area to really see how to make a mall successful and nice.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

Lenox Square and Phipps Plaza are very nice. My sister moved to Alpharetta in November and the North Point Mall (where Whitney Houston was pulled over, maybe for smelling too much like marijuana? :P ) is open, clean and vibrant. Buckhead is in an entirely different category. I just wish the area wasn't spread out over 72 continents and planets. I do like Atlanta, in spite of its traffic.

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