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Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Offices at Madison Square? They're coming.

UPDATE (8/10): The development will be called "Enterprise Center at Madison Square."Also, the former Steve and Barry's will be converted into office space as well, along with some smaller first-floor space near Buffalo Wild Wings (see updated map below). In all, nearly 138,000 square feet of retail space will be converted, or about 15% of the mall.

Have you ever wanted to work in a shopping mall--work that wouldn't involve the cookie cart or Foot Locker? Your chance may be coming, if Madison Square's developers (Chattanooga-based CBL) have their way. They're expected to announce as early as this week that the old Pizitz/McRae's/Belk anchor-- approximately 100,000 sq. ft.-- will be (at least partially) converted into office space. The store has been vacant since Belk moved to the Parisian space in 2007. Some readers may note that the anchor space is still owned by the Pizitz family of Birmingham-- it will be interesting to see what kind of involvement they have in this redevelopment.
Yellow-- the old McRae's/Belk space that will be completely converted. Orange-- the second level will be converted, whereas the first level will be a retail/office mix.

It's definitely not the complete overhaul I've proposed for the 25-year-old mall that's nearing the end of its useful life. But at least it's a start.


Daniel Grace said...

I'm interested in following this project. Where do you get your news? Is there any place I can go or sign up to get updates about this one particular project?

Your google map, for instance, doesn't have a marker for this at all.

James said...

I haven't had time to put it on the Google map. It'll be on there later this evening.

Anonymous said...

Offices in a mall? These types of things happen when a mall is basically of little value. Like Calhoun moving into the old Toys R Us mall, or Hiwaay moving into the old Heart of Huntsville mall.

I would say the end is near for Madison Square. It may sputter along for some time though, look at how long those other malls held on, vacant, before they finally got redeveloped.

Anonymous said...

I think there is a mall in Tyson's Corner, VA that has some configuration like this. Bridge street has this concept with corporate business anchors and on the second level unused space.

Be interesting to see if it works and helps support the other businesses in Madison Square.

Stephen said...

Do you know what the "nonretail, nonoffice growth" mentioned at the end of the Times article might be? (http://blog.al.com/huntsville-times-business/2010/08/cbl_associates_pizitz_manageme.html)

Stephen said...

Also, I noticed CBL talked about their "mixed-use centers in Houston and Port Orange, Fla., that combine both retail and office space." Those two properties are Pearland Town Center and the Pavilion at Port Orange, both open-air centers that opened within the last couple of years (http://www.cblproperties.com/cbl.nsf/pro). I hope it works out, but office space in Madison Square is going to be a much tougher sell than office space in places like Bridge Street.

James said...

@Stephen: If I had to guess, the non-office, non-retail development would be another hotel.

Anonymous said...


NW Huntsville is no Tyson's Corner. Call me pessimistic, but this plan seems to have more in common with Heart of Huntsville than Tyson's.

What they really need to do is redevelop the entire site into some sort of mixed use, office/retail/housing complex.