A Mall Opens in Tough Times

A $276 million mixed-use remake of a 1973-era mall is opening on Interstate 64 in southeastern Virginia. While the retail is trickling in, the housing element is filling up quickly.

"The office space leasing is also going slowly; there is one small tenant as of May. "You need to have office space finished - we will be actively marketing it this summer," Steiner says, predicting that "within two years we will be fully leased."

The residential portion of the project has been very successful. "Normally you can't lease apartments until people see them," Steiner says. "We've been doing 20 units a month before any of them opened." Steiner has already increased rents and is getting a premium compared to the other units in the area. "What we find out is that people who like to live in such places see the whole town center as an amenity."

Thanks to Renee Brutvan

Full Story: Virginia town center opens in tough economy

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