vw polo bluemotion 80 million east Tulsa outlet mall banks on being only one
Correction: This story incorrectly listed the number of construction jobs the proposed Outlet Shoppes at Tulsa is expected to create. It is expected to create 800 to 1,000 construction jobs. The story has been corrected.
Officials unveiled plans Wednesday afternoon for an $80 million upscale outlet mall and retail development in east Tulsa, which they said would generate 1,200 permanent jobs and nearly $95 million in sales tax revenue across 15 years.
Gary Skoien, The Horizon Group president and CEO, laid out his vision for 355,000 square feet of leasable retail space, along with art deco inspired architecture, a 25 acre pond, a courtyard, food pavilions, a children’s play area and walking trails around the development that lead to the mall. 75 and 61st Street, just north of the Tulsa Hills development.
However, Skoien said he thinks his project The Outlet Shoppes at Tulsa will become the only outlet mall in the Tulsa region. Skoien said he guarantees that just one will be built in Tulsa, noting that a scenario in which multiple outlet malls are in the same area almost never plays out because of the huge investment and risks involved.
He said the competition generated from multiple outlet mall projects vying for businesses slows down the acquisition of the necessary number of tenants to break ground on a project.
“I would say in late winter or early spring we’ll know for sure” which of the outlet malls will emerge, Skoien said.
The property Horizon Group identified for the project is between 129th and 145th East Avenues, the northwest corner of which would be bounded by where Interstate 44 connects with I 244.
Skoien said the shopping center is projected to do $120 to $130 million a year in sales with 90 retailers and to create 800 to 1,000 construction jobs, 1,200 regular jobs at the mall and 1,600 jobs during the holiday season. The development would become a destination, drawing not just local and metro customers but tourists, people from the nearby airport, and 190,000 cars that pass by daily.
The accessibility and its visibility from the interstate will factor into its success, he said.
“There’s no doubt in my mind this outlet center is going to be the finest design, the best location and provide the most benefits to the city of Tulsa,” Skoien said.
Skoien said making the project work will require financial incentives with infrastructure needs that must be met. He said Horizon Group and city leaders are working on an incentives package, specifically a tax increment financing district.
The proposed project is broken up into two phases. The first phase is 310,000 square feet with an investment of $80 million. A second phase of 45,000 square feet would follow at an unspecified time and unspecified cost. Skoien targeted late 2016 or early 2017 for an opening if Horizon Group gets terms squared away with the city and enough tenants.
The development also calls for space for restaurants, hotels and offices.
Councilor Skip Steele, whose district encompasses the mall’s proposed site, said he spent several months looking at the proposal. He said it will be an anchor and a catalyst for further development in an area that is in need of an infusion of economic life.
“It is exactly what Tulsa needs and exactly where Tulsa needs it,” Steele said.
In the 1940s and ’50s, people from surrounding communities such as Broken Arrow, Owasso and Bixby came to Tulsa for their shopping needs, Steele said. The city benefited, using those tax collections to build Tulsa, he said.
Jump ahead to 2014, Steele said, and those communities have their own shopping destinations and supermarkets, so Tulsa loses out on that former tax revenue. This outlet mall would help regain that, Steele said, because statistics from the similar outlet mall in Oklahoma City show that more than 50 percent of its shoppers come from outside the city.
“We expect the same thing to happen here,” Steele said. “Fifty percent of the people who shop in this mall will be from communities other than Tulsa. So we will start reversing that trend; we will bring revenue in from the outlying communities.”
Larry Parman, Oklahoma secretary of commerce, said he loves the project. As an Oklahoma City resident, Parman said he has seen first hand the positive effects and draw of The Outlet Shoppes at Oklahoma City.
“It’s an economic magnet,” he said.
When asked to supply odds of his plan getting built, Skoien noted that “as we all know, life isn’t fair.” But if the issue came down to choosing the best site with the most economic benefits to the city, while also maximizing sales, he said, “we should be 100 percent.”
“But we’ll see what happens,” Skoien added.
Horizon Group is the developer of The Outlet Shoppes at Oklahoma City as well as 11 retail developments throughout the United States. Skoien declined to name potential or actual tenants. However, he said the typical brands customers see at Horizon Group’s other properties are the kinds of brands people can anticipate.
Tenants at The Outlet Shoppes in Oklahoma City include Saks OFF 5th, Polo Ralph Lauren, Nike, Coach, Brooks Brothers, Under Armour, Banana Republic, Gap, Guess, Chicos and Tommy Hilfiger.
No, this type of mall isn’t like Eastland in one major thing. The target audience. Eastland was a mall aimed at the locals as customers, an outlet mall by the interstate is aimed at those from other areas or tourists. My guess is that they are aiming for the casino visitor not the locals. So it might work, though honestly having two outlet malls on the opposite sides of the city is probably overkill and more than likely only one will survive. In this instance the East mall will have a better location being closer to the Hard Rock Casino. the West mall will be closer to section 8 apartments.
Crony capitalists use our elected politicians (who once were servants of the government of We the People but who nowadays are simply pawns and puppets for their rich, crony capitalist pals) to gain access to taxpayer dollars to fund their infrastructure costs, after which they open businesses like this outlet mall, which will pay far less than a decent, living wage to all of its employees, and which will sell very high profit, second quality goods to unsophisticated and unsuspecting Oklahoma consumers.