In an effort to increase sales and drive FFO growth, Pennsylvania Real Estate Investment Trust (PREIT) is adding lifestyle and retail components at three of its aging malls surrounding Philadelphia — Cherry Hill Mall, Plymouth Meeting Mall and the Echelon Mall.
“By renovating these properties, we will improve the level of shopping experience and change the way people shop in the Philadelphia area,” says Edward Glickman, PREIT president and CEO.
Cherry Hill (N.J.) Mall, is introducing a 140,000-square-foot Nordstrom to replace Strawbridge's department store, which became Macy's when the May Co., merged with Federated Department Stores. The 46 year-old mall is also adding 120,000 square feet of retail including specialty stores and upscale dining venues as part of its $198 million makeover. All told PREIT is projecting the renovations will push the center's sales above its current $477 per square foot.
At Plymouth Meeting Mall, PREIT is spending $84 million to add a 200,000-square-foot open-air center anchored by a 70,0000-square-foot Whole Foods. The property will also include several new restaurants such as P.F. Chang's, Redstone Grille, California Pizza Kitchen and Benihana.
Meanwhile, PREIT is rebranding the Echelon Mall, as the Mall at Voorhees Town Center. The 30-year-old 1.1-million-square-foot mall located in Voorhees, N.J. was acquired in 2003 by PREIT. It has partnered with Philadelphia-based Dewey Commercial to fund a $151 million redevelopment of the mall to a mixed-used center. The mall will be renovated with its retail GLA dropping to 654,000 square feet. But the renovation will add 425 luxury residential units and 121,000 square feet of retail shops and restaurants on the ground floor. There will also be a 65,000-square-foot supermarket and 26,000 square feet of outparcel space.