Chesterfield Valley outlet mall announces earlier opening date
By: Carol Enright
Taubman Centers recently announced an accelerated grand opening date for its Taubman Prestige Outlets Chesterfield, a 450,000-square-foot, open-air outlet center being built on the north side of Hwy. 40 on 49 acres west of the Hardee’s Iceplex skating rink. The new opening date is Aug. 2, 2013, almost three months earlier than the Oct. 24, 2013, date Taubman announced at its groundbreaking in July.
Taubman spokeswoman, Karen Mac Donald, said the success of recent back-to-school tax-free weekends at retailers in Missouri, and throughout the country, prompted the developer to speed up its construction schedule to enable the outlet center opening to coincide with this event. Taubman’s contractors will meet the earlier opening by building the center in two phases.
The first phase, scheduled to open on Aug. 2, will encompass approximately 310,000 square feet and 80 stores. The remaining 140,000 square feet and 30-40 stores will open in the spring of 2014.
“It’s a great advantage for our retailers, providing them the ability to be open during what is really the second busiest shopping season of the year,” said Mac Donald. “We know that they’re going to be thrilled with the new date.”
Mac Donald said that when the developer floated the idea of an earlier opening by some of its retailers, their response was “overwhelming – yes, go for it.”
Drivers who pass the Taubman site off North Outer Forty Road have seen a lot of activity as of late. The developer expects drainage and utility work to be completed in the next few weeks and walls to start going up by mid-October.
Mac Donald said that the new outlet center, combined with the shopping at Chesterfield Commons and Chesterfield Mall, is “really going to put Chesterfield on the map as a major shopping destination.”
She pointed to the developer’s experience in building shopping centers that have become major tourist attractions – including Cherry Creek Shopping Center, the No.1 visitor attraction in Denver, Colo., and Woodfield Shopping Center, the No. 1 visitor attraction in Illinois.
“We know the tourism business, and we believe that this will definitely be a shopping destination for visitors as well as locals,” said Mac Donald.
Meanwhile, Simon Property Group, the developer behind St. Louis Premium Outlets, the competing outlet center planned for the south side of Hwy. 40 east of the Daniel Boone Bridge, has updated its scheduled opening date, too. The developer – which had promised a “fall 2013” opening – recently committed itself to a September 2013 opening.
Simon recently sold its interest in the St. Louis Mills in Hazelwood to The Woodmont Company, its partner in St. Louis Premium Outlets. Representatives from Simon would not comment on the sale, but issued this statement: “Simon Property Group remains committed to St. Louis Premium Outlets in Chesterfield.”
As the race to build an outlet mall continues, all that remains to be seen is whether the first to open is the last one standing.