Greater Philly mall thread: The good, the bad, and the dead.

Discussion in 'The Suburbs' started by Nytecat, Mar 8, 2016.

  1. Jayfar

    Jayfar I'm very old®

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  2. Nytecat

    Nytecat Well-Known Member

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    The best solution to the Brooklyn Pizza issue would be for them to move into the Qdoba space which has, or could easily have, a separate entrance for operation outside of mall hours. Is TILT open after hours? I never took notice because I'm not there when the mall is closed.

    Yard House at PMM is a nice idea but unfortunately they already have a King of Prussia location. Could Dave and Busters go to Moorestown? I suppose its possible. But I wonder if D&B is starting to spread themselves too thin. Eater-tainment may be supplanting retail at malls, but it too has its limits. Moorestown just lost two sit down restaurants while PMM saw the departure of Uncle Julio's and Elevation Burger. To be fair, Uncle Julio was on the plaza side of the mall and most customers probably think all the sit down joints are on the restaurant side. I also suspect PREIT is charging too much in rent for restaurants.

    I can't read that latest article on Burlington Center as I've reached my article limit. Still, it irks me to no end that Virtua is about to pave over open space when the BCM site will soon be available.
     
  3. dontforget

    dontforget Well-Known Member

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    The former Qdoba space at VTC does have it's own entrance. But, I like the restaurant boulevard better and there are about 3-4 vacant spaces at least currently. There is a former Yogurtland space that still remains vacant, and it's next to the Friendly's. (Yogurtland closed right before Friendly's opened, and I don't know if that was coincidence) I'd think there would be some good cross traffic (eat pizza, then ice-cream) and it'd be easier for luxury apartment dwellers to walk down and do a carry-out. But that's my $0.02 at the moment.

    I went today and the mall was just too quiet for a Saturday afternoon. I think the foodcourt's economics are no longer viable and the large space could be re-used. I was thinking about it again, and maybe the Camden County library could replace the entire food court and then some on the lower level. There is natural light from above which is kind of nice. I still also think Victoria Secret and Bath & Body Works would do better at the Eagle Plaza which is getting a facelift and it's just a move within Voorhees (so the township wouldn't lose). Payless also closed its Lindenwold Station location but kept the VTC site. But it's in bankruptcy and likely not a reliable tenant anyways. With these changes, it would hurt the remaining retail (Adventureland, for example) but the retail (outside of Boscovs) in the mall is pretty nonexistant.

    I went also to Moorestown Mall today and then the new Wal-Mart on 73. Wal-Mart for a long time was pushing to get into Mt. Laurel, even though Mt Laurel is more dominated by Wegmans, Target and Costco. Anyways, the Wal-Mart isn't all that large for all that fight. According to the Courier Post, it's 90,000 sq. ft.
    https://www.courierpostonline.com/s...g-giveaways-food-family-activities/673025002/

    Walmart Now Has 6 Types Of Stores

    What I'm glad is the traffic pattern has changed in the 73/Fellowship Rd. intersection. If the timing was better (e.g. macy's had closed two years prior, that Wal-Mart could have gotten a much larger space at the Moorestown Mall and 38 facing and more accessible for majority of Mt Laurel and Moorestown). Wal-Mart probably settled for a smaller store than what it builds elsewhere.

    I think PREIT is likely charging high rent for the restaurants and pushing too much upscale in the mall area, as I guess they want to make use of their liquor licenses. In the mall, I saw advertising for a restaurant week event and they listed the restaurants in Cherry Hill Mall and Moorestown Mall together. Honestly, it was the first time that I saw PREIT advertise the two malls together in any fashion.

    But the more known restaurants around Moorestown Mall are probably the Don Pablo, Bertuccis and now Buffalo Wild Wings that surround the mall. It would be full circle if Friendly's returned to the Moorestown Mall. It used to operate there in the early 90's, before the partial mall fire. Then it moved to East Gate Sq. but it lost its lease when East Gate Sq. got a liquor license and made room for Buffalo Wild Wings. As far as entertainment around Moorestown Mall, I think there isn't that much. There is a Playdrome in Cherry Hill, but I think that's far enough and there is Funplex in Mt. Laurel. The latter targets younger kids. Speed Raceway is in Cinnaminson, in a former Acme space I believe. I've seen go Indoor Go Karting recently in a couple malls that I visited in western NY.
     
    #363 dontforget, Jul 14, 2018
    Last edited: Jul 14, 2018
  4. Nytecat

    Nytecat Well-Known Member

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    Another possibility for Brooklyn Pizza may be one of those outward facing storefronts just past the Macy's court. While the Boulevard and the mall portions of VTC aren't far apart, there is a palpable dead zone between the two and something is needed to encourage pedestrian traffic to go from one to the other. An indoor go cart track may be good for VTC or Moorestown but already enough of those around I doubt they'd succeed at both locations.

    Here's a new article that has several mentions of Voorhees and Burlington Center malls. Can New Jersey's Dying Malls Be Saved?

    And here's a northjersey dot com opinion piece on making the Garden State more attractive for millenials. https://www.northjersey.com/story/o...lls-and-millennials-leaving-jersey/662141002/
     
  5. dontforget

    dontforget Well-Known Member

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    Those fronts haven't ever been filled but seem also like somewhat decent spaces. The VTC in general has too much excess retail space like that, and I have no idea how these spaces will all fill.

    I remember when Scotto's Pizza was the pizza tenant at Echelon Mall. At one point of time, it had two locations - one at the upper level by Boscov's, with it's own sit down section, and another presence at the food court. Times have certainly changed. At that time, Sbarro was the pizza tenant at Moorestown Mall. I don't recall the name of the pizza place at Cherry Hill Mall, but I remember and miss the old food court. For a time, Lorenzo's Pizza was there in Voorhees Town Center, which after some absence became another Brooklyn Pizza. Brooklyn's Pizza (came from Burlington Center) into Moorestown is an improvement over Sbarro, in my opinion.

    On another note, JCPenney is actually opening up a new store in Brooklyn:
    J.C. Penney's New Brooklyn Store Is an Interesting Move

    I hope that new location and concept store works well. I understand the Sephora store inside store, and JCPenney not focusing on apparel, but I'm not sure how the appliances at JCPenney works as a business plan. Wouldn't shoppers go to Home Depot, Lowes or Best Buy, before a JCPenney, for appliances?
     
    #365 dontforget, Jul 22, 2018
    Last edited: Jul 22, 2018
  6. Nytecat

    Nytecat Well-Known Member

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    I'm not a fan of Sbarro's either. They always seemed overpriced for what they serve. I don't know exactly when but at some point department stores stopped being department stores and started pushing softlines while deemphasizing hardlines or getting rid of them entirely. I think JCP is both trying to correct that mistake as well as capitalize on the many Sears closings happening. Taking market share from Sears is one thing but who thinks of JCP in the same breath as Best Buy, Home Depot, etc. for major appliances?

    Here's a Business Insider article ripping Main Street Voorhees updated to include Brandywine's rebuttal. I still need to get out there and explore this place first hand. Welcome To Main Street: Truly The Most Depressing Commercial Real Estate Project We've Ever Seen*
     
  7. dontforget

    dontforget Well-Known Member

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    My parents live in Marlton, close to Main Street Voorhees, but when I'm passing it on Evesham Rd, I never think about it, and it's also kind of tucked in more, and kind of boring like an office complex. I feel it's more boutique in nature. I suppose more people have memories of Echelon Mall and what's around there. When I think about Voorhees, what comes to mind is Echelon Mall and area, West Jersey Hospital, now Virtua, it being a hub for Indian food/restaurants and doctor's offices. The 73 development is also new and likely more visible on Voorhees, although it's not that large of a stretch but somewhat an extension of Marlton. However, there is also a considerable demographic change when one leaves Voorhees into West Berlin.
     
    #367 dontforget, Jul 27, 2018
    Last edited: Jul 27, 2018
  8. dontforget

    dontforget Well-Known Member

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    I went to the Hamilton Mall today and I realized that the macy's closed at 8pm. Of course, I parked by the macy's, walked to the foodcourt to get a bite, and macy's had closed when I needed to walk back to my car. It closes at 8pm on Mon, Tues. and Wed, before the mall closes! I spoke to a worker at another in line store, and he mentioned that it was crazy. It likely also hurts business at other stores.

    Originally, I thought it was a decent macy's store and likely should do well, but it must be under performing. I suppose that it doesn't pull in the tourism traffic, that likes heads to the Outlets and the Pier at Caesars. In contrast, JCPenney closes at 9pm and the Boscov's at the former Shore Mall closes at 9:30pm on all weekdays.

    Does Macy's do this at any other Philly region area mall?
     
    #368 dontforget, Jul 31, 2018
    Last edited: Jul 31, 2018
  9. Nytecat

    Nytecat Well-Known Member

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    So, it sounds like when Voorhees wants to shop they go to 73. But for fun and special events they still head to Echelon Mall while Main Street is an afterthought? A crude summary, sure, but that's kinda what it seems like. Anyway, some Voorhees residents recall the township trying to make Main Street their downtown back in the 1990s. That failed and now they're opposed to any plans for VTC that will cost taxpayer money or will leave potential tax revenue on the table.

    A quick check of Macy's website says yes! Macy's used to close at 8:30 midweek during the off season at their lower tier stores. But they've quietly moved that back to 8:00 pm this year. I can understand secondary stores close to Philly closing early. But since the Hamilton Macy's is the only one for the entire south shore, I wouldn't have expected that.
     
  10. dontforget

    dontforget Well-Known Member

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    For Voorhees: In addition, for movies, it's Ritz theater (now AMC) and there are various shopping centers (Ritz center, Eagle Plaza) that have shopping choices and restaurants, and hotels between them. Also, surrounding towns have competing retail choices, and now someone from Marlton would have less reason to shop in Voorhees, but someone from Voorhees would shop more in Marlton, with it's greater selection of stores.

    For the southern NJ shore: for a long time, I thought macy's had a superior position to JCPenney and Boscov's. JCPenney is in the back of the Hamilton mall not facing Black Horse Pike, while Boscov was in a rundown Shore Mall. There are still a couple of mostly dead shopping centers by the Boscov's. However, in some ways, Boscov's has a superior position, being actually closer to the Shore towns for the population there. Say one needs to pick up a pair of clothes. Boscov's is an shorter distance drive from a place like Margate. Still, the Hamilton Mall area is a small hub with a big box center as well, and I'm rather surprised macy's closes early in the summer (before it's even dark) in this mall and before the rest of the mall closes, but perhaps I shouldn't be surprised.
     
    #370 dontforget, Aug 2, 2018
    Last edited: Aug 2, 2018
  11. dontforget

    dontforget Well-Known Member

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    Pei Wei closes Moorestown Mall restaurant:
    https://www.courierpostonline.com/s...i-wei-closes-moorestown-restaurant/897666002/

    According to the article, Pei Wei actually separated from PF Chang's in 2017. I never really understood the point of Pei Wei there, as it would just compete with PF Chang's in Marlton. Unless it was to appease customers who didn't want to travel all the way down 73 to PF Changs. But, IMO, the freestanding pad originally with Potbelly and Pei Wei wasn't really that easily accessible or visible like other sites of the mall.

    I don't think it's a major loss for the mall also, and it wasn't well connected to the mall either. Sprint occupies the other site of the pad (originally PotBelly, later Corner Bakery Cafe). PREIT should secure another non-dining place on that site and keep the dining options on sites, attached to the mall.
     
    #371 dontforget, Aug 3, 2018
    Last edited: Aug 3, 2018
  12. Politburo

    Politburo Well-Known Member

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  13. dontforget

    dontforget Well-Known Member

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    A Burlington/Dick's combination also replaced a macy's in another mall that I'm familiar with, that is, Hunt Valley Mall (now Hunt Valley Town Centre), over 15 years ago.

    I mentioned awhile ago that Burlington would be a good fit for PMM, since Burlington lacks an area tstore and is expanding. The Dick's relocation is similar to what happened in Vineland at Cumberland Mall with PREIT, where Dick's moved from another center into the mall. I'd thought lately even Target would benefit it moved to the PMM mall, in terms of improved visibility, and built a store similar to Christiana at PMM.

    In Moorestown/Mt. Laurel, the Best Buy/Dick's/Barnes & Noble at the East Gate Sq. however is in a pretty decent corridor with supporting flow between these stores. In general, it's not worthwhile for Dick's to relocate to Moorestown Mall, but I'd think worthwhile for Marshall's in another former Kmart anchored center, to relocate to the Moorestown mall.

    From the Courier Post in South Jersey, mentioning new Gap store:

    https://www.courierpostonline.com/s...ll-nj-retail-back-school-september/933649002/

    I'm a little surprised that the Courier Post writer didn't confirm the CH Mall store's fate. I'd be really surprised if Gap kept two Gap stores in west Cherry Hill. It shuttered it's Moorestown Mall location which was positioned between the Cherry Hill Mall and Marlton (outdoor) stores, less than five years ago IIRC.
     
    #373 dontforget, Aug 8, 2018
    Last edited: Aug 8, 2018
  14. ShoshTrvls

    ShoshTrvls Well-Known Member

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    Sun Equity Partners revives a Philadelphia mall by returning it to its roots
     
  15. Nytecat

    Nytecat Well-Known Member

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    Maybe the future of the Cherry Hill Mall Gap is not known yet. It seems unlikely that they'd keep both stores open though.

    Regarding Cheltenham, the article said all the usual stuff about "reinventing" a tired depressed enclosed mall as an outdoor plaza. Nothing really unusual there. And again, nothing said about the loss of what was a valued indoor space that hosted numerous activities besides shopping.

    One thing that irks me about nj.com is that when they go on about dead and dying malls in the Garden State, they pick on Voorhees and Burlington while paying little attention to Ledgewood (currently being demalled) and Phillipsburg (on its last legs). The roof in the former Sears collapsed following a heavy downpour which closed the mall for a short time. They have recovered from that but the long term outlook is much cloudier. Phillipsburg Mall reopens after roof collapse, but for how long?
     
  16. dontforget

    dontforget Well-Known Member

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    I just remember when Gap at Marlton Square opened. My friends from out of town had said they had never seen Gap not inside of a mall and just in a plaza.

    Gap had Cherry Hill, Echelon and Moorestown all open at the same time, and even by standards of that time, it was too many stores close to each other. And then slowly but surely, it closed Echelon (no surprise) and later Moorestown. It operated for years at Deptford Mall as well too, and that is most surprising to close up there, since Deptford isn't an anemic mall.

    The current CH Mall Gap is close to stores like Justice, Vans, Hot Topic and Aeropostale, all stores which attract younger crowds likely better than Gap does now. Maybe one year later after the new store opens, it will close if it's not an outright relocation. The GS Pavilions has J.Jill and Barnes & Noble, which likely fit the Gap (older) demographic, and the lower non mall rent is likely appealing for Gap. When it happens, it will leave Gap without any enclosed mall presence in South Jersey while being off mall instead.
     
    #376 dontforget, Aug 10, 2018 at 4:20 PM
    Last edited: Aug 10, 2018 at 4:45 PM
  17. Nytecat

    Nytecat Well-Known Member

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    Times are definitely changing and traditional mall staples moving to outdoor strip centers is just one example. For at least one place, an outdoor center was the final nail in the coffin. Westbury's Mall at the Source did OK as a secondary mall in the shadow of Roosevelt Field. But when the Galleria at Westbury or whatever its called opened next store, most of the major mall tenants switched over leaving a mostly empty building in its wake.

    I was at King of Prussia this Sunday and they started replacing the old floor tiles near the connector in the Plaza. There's also a sign for a new tenant coming to the flagship space in their Savor dining area called North Italia. It only took them two years to fill this spot. :p
     
  18. Nytecat

    Nytecat Well-Known Member

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