Friday, December 2nd, 2016

We all want to see the plan, part II

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This does not make me feel good about Pabst Farms signing a contract with a new developer:

Oconomowoc Mayor Maury Sullivan said Monday he was happy to see plans for the retail center moving forward.

But, warning that the city is sticking to its vision of a high-quality regional retail center, Sullivan said he hoped Developers Diversified Realty’s plans for the mall are similar to the proposal by General Growth. A plan for a collection of free-standing large-format stores, also called “big box” stores, will not be welcomed, he said.

“As positive and hopeful as I am about DDR, we have to wait to see what plans they submit,” Sullivan said. “The city has an ordinance in place that’s specific about what the city’s interests are for that site.”

Nation said a timetable has not been established for submission of plans to Oconomowoc. But Nation said he expects DDR to start looking for tenants next year.

Shouldn’t Pabst Farms have seen the plans first and then signed a deal with the developer?

DDR owns and manages about 740 centers in 45 states, plus Puerto Rico, Brazil, Russia and Canada, totaling more than 160 million square feet. The company’s tenant list is long and includes national retail chains typically found in malls across the country. Anchor department stores in DDR properties include those owned by Bon-Ton Stores Inc., the parent company for Boston Store; Dillard’s; Kohl’s; J.C. Penney; Macy’s; and Sears. High-end department stores, including Nordstrom, Von Maur, Neiman Marcus and Saks Fifth Avenue, were not on the list. {emphasis added}

It’s like signing a contract with an artist to have your portait done and then discovering he’s only worked with black velvet. Pabst Farms doesn’t have to be developed right away. It doesn’t even have to be developed at all. But if it’s going to be done, let’s get it right. This doesn’t look like it’s being done right, just in a hurry.

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