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Old 10-24-2018, 10:54 AM
 
Location: Brooklyn, NY
6,926 posts, read 10,232,030 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cooldiver View Post
Demo of the old Sears is underway:


Kingsport Times-News: Demolition of Sears underway


Buried in the fine print, Zales Jewelry closed. Though that may be more Zales than the mall, as Zales is closing some stores as leases expire.
I went into the mall today. Whoa, the Sears demolition is about 1/3 way complete. They are moving fast.

The mall had a busy, active and energetic vibe inside. I ate at Charley's Steaks and it was awesome (forgot how good that place is). The ice cream store looks to be a couple weeks out from opening.

The management of this mall seems to get it. Create a bright, vibrant, energetic interior and slowly roll out new stores while continuing fresh renovation and redevelopment. Disappointing about Zales, but I think there are like 3 jewelry stores in the mall, so that's not a huge surprise.

The bones and vibrancy is starting again, so the groundwork is there now to start opening new stores. As I've mentioned previously, Fort Henry Mall is sitting on a potential boom of the next "it" spot for new stores and place "to go" in the Kingsport area.

The Pavilion is fading and has lost a bit of its luster, and Stone East Commons has just been around for 20 years now, so it is old with the same stores.

Fort Henry is now in a position to rebrand itself and represent itself to the Kingsport area as a "go-to" spot--IF they seize on the opportunity now.

My thoughts are they need to continue to slowly roll out stores within the mall, and put in a new restaurant in the old mexican spot next to Victoria's Secret and across from the theater. Then, ideally they need to announce a new retail store going in place of Sears, when it is fully demolished in early 2019.
Icing on the cake would be for 2 or 3 restaurants to open on the parking lot site pads surrounding the mall. Namely, a Dunkin Donuts, Steak n Shake, Red Robin, Moe's, Red Lobster, Outback Steakhouse, Chik Fil A, etc.

Keys are the restaurants have to be "go-to" spots not in Kingsport, or much needed in that part of Kingsport.
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Old 03-27-2019, 10:08 AM
 
Location: Brooklyn, NY
6,926 posts, read 10,232,030 times
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Saw a movie at the NCG Cinemas in Fort Henry Mall last night. It's the first time I had been over there since before Christmas.

This mall is poised to be THE retail destination for Kingsport again. The mall renovation is really high quality, it's super bright inside the mall and very nice, but there are still tons of vacant stores.

As for the Sears store, it's completely demolished, the ground is leveled dirt, and that store's area is fenced off. I'm guessing for the future development they so desperately need to attract.

What would help invigorate this mall and turn it into a destination type shopping, restaurant and entertainment area again, would be for the mall to attract these type of restaurants and stores:

Publix (in the demolished Sears spot)
Marshall's (in the demolished Sears spot)
Dunkin Donuts (outparcel around the mall)
Steak n Shake (outparcel)
Red Lobster (outparcel)
Outback Steakhouse (outparcel)
Chick Fil A (inside or outparcel)

There's no way the mall can refill all of the interior stores, in my estimation at least. I think they need to attract big stores and big restaurants, and let that momentum allow for other smaller stores to slowly open up, and that's that.

They've invested so many millions into a top notch, high quality renovation, that these type of stores should logically follow. However, I'm not sure their marketing/business development teams are focusing on recruiting stores to this mall aggressively.

I think they need to imitate the Pinnacle and Mall at Johnson City's marketing/business development success, at least for a few new restaurants and stores to pop up this year.
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Old 03-27-2019, 10:16 AM
 
Location: Gate City, VA
295 posts, read 265,854 times
Reputation: 191
Quote:
Originally Posted by jjbradleynyc View Post
Saw a movie at the NCG Cinemas in Fort Henry Mall last night. It's the first time I had been over there since before Christmas.

This mall is poised to be THE retail destination for Kingsport again. The mall renovation is really high quality, it's super bright inside the mall and very nice, but there are still tons of vacant stores.

As for the Sears store, it's completely demolished, the ground is leveled dirt, and that store's area is fenced off. I'm guessing for the future development they so desperately need to attract.

What would help invigorate this mall and turn it into a destination type shopping, restaurant and entertainment area again, would be for the mall to attract these type of restaurants and stores:

Publix (in the demolished Sears spot)
Marshall's (in the demolished Sears spot)
Dunkin Donuts (outparcel around the mall)
Steak n Shake (outparcel)
Red Lobster (outparcel)
Outback Steakhouse (outparcel)
Chick Fil A (inside or outparcel)

There's no way the mall can refill all of the interior stores, in my estimation at least. I think they need to attract big stores and big restaurants, and let that momentum allow for other smaller stores to slowly open up, and that's that.

They've invested so many millions into a top notch, high quality renovation, that these type of stores should logically follow. However, I'm not sure their marketing/business development teams are focusing on recruiting stores to this mall aggressively.

I think they need to imitate the Pinnacle and Mall at Johnson City's marketing/business development success, at least for a few new restaurants and stores to pop up this year.

Some good ideas but Red Lobster isn't doing well so that's out, Chick Fil A is possible but only outside. Many malls no longer have Chick Fil A inside because they want them open on Sunday which they refuse to do so when their lease expires they kick them out. That's what happened in this mall before. The owners told them stay open on Sunday or you got to go so they were kicked out. DD already has two spots in Kingsport so I don't see that happening. Steak n Shake also is closing quite a number of stores and is downsizing so I don't see another one opening in this area now, despite the fact that the Bristol one does well. Marshall's is possible and I've heard rumors they are interested, same with Publix. Although Publix interest in Kingsport seems to be little to none. So I'd say on this list Marshall's is the most likely with Publix next, Chick Fil A eh maybe outside. All the others though no way.
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Old 03-27-2019, 10:28 AM
 
Location: Brooklyn, NY
6,926 posts, read 10,232,030 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sprintuser2014 View Post
Some good ideas but Red Lobster isn't doing well so that's out, Chick Fil A is possible but only outside. Many malls no longer have Chick Fil A inside because they want them open on Sunday which they refuse to do so when their lease expires they kick them out. That's what happened in this mall before. The owners told them stay open on Sunday or you got to go so they were kicked out. DD already has two spots in Kingsport so I don't see that happening. Steak n Shake also is closing quite a number of stores and is downsizing so I don't see another one opening in this area now, despite the fact that the Bristol one does well. Marshall's is possible and I've heard rumors they are interested, same with Publix. Although Publix interest in Kingsport seems to be little to none. So I'd say on this list Marshall's is the most likely with Publix next, Chick Fil A eh maybe outside. All the others though no way.
Kingsport needs another Chik Fil A, badly. The Stone Drive one is constantly packed.

However, I've read that the owners of Chik Fil A's have to actually work/manage the store 40 hours a week, so that makes finding owners and those willing to do so more challenging.

As for Steak n Shake, they fit the Kingsport "burger/steak" demographic well. They just recently opened a store at the Pinnacle, so why not Fort Henry? I think it would do incredibly well.

As for Red Lobster, yeah, it's a restaurant I could see doing ok, but its time to open in Kingsport might've passed already.

As for Outback Steakhouse, they have a location in JC and one at the Pinnacle in Bristol. Kingsport embraces steakhouses/burger joints, so Kingsport should be next.

The Dunkin in Colonial Heights is a world away from Fort Henry Mall area. A store there at Fort Henry would be very busy. The Colonial Heights store is near I-81 and gets a bit of that customer traffic, of people exiting for coffee and gas. The other location in Kingsport is far away on the west side on Stone Drive. Another hike to get to for this part of Kingsport.

That spot is perfect for Publix. That area of Kingsport needs another grocery store. As recently as 10 years ago, there were FOUR grocery stores within 1/2 mile of each other near Fort Henry Mall--Winn Dixie, Oakwood, Food Lion and Food City. Now, it's just Food City with a monopoly on that neighborhood. Publix should shake things up. Also, Marshall's is a great choice, and they seem to be doing well as a company--an outlier in this shaky retail world.
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Old 03-28-2019, 01:33 PM
 
Location: Tennessee
28,477 posts, read 21,364,064 times
Reputation: 34962
Oakwood has been gone way more than ten years - probably pushing twenty by this point.

The problem with the mall is that getting the stores/improving the facility is kind of a chicken and egg deal. I really like the idea of Publix in the old Sears spot, but that's still not really a reason to go inside the mall.

Part of the problem is that the stuff that's still somewhat viable on the inside of the mall is basically right on the edge. I'm sure tons of people go through Penney's to Italian Village or come in on the bottom to Piccadilly, but never really venture inside the mall.

The mall is still missing interior stores that are worthwhile to go to. I'm not likely to make a special trip inside the mall to eat at Charley's.

Personally, I think there needs to be something to do inside the mall - not just retail.
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Old 03-29-2019, 10:41 AM
 
Location: Brooklyn, NY
6,926 posts, read 10,232,030 times
Reputation: 5724
Quote:
Originally Posted by Serious Conversation View Post
Oakwood has been gone way more than ten years - probably pushing twenty by this point.

The problem with the mall is that getting the stores/improving the facility is kind of a chicken and egg deal. I really like the idea of Publix in the old Sears spot, but that's still not really a reason to go inside the mall.

Part of the problem is that the stuff that's still somewhat viable on the inside of the mall is basically right on the edge. I'm sure tons of people go through Penney's to Italian Village or come in on the bottom to Piccadilly, but never really venture inside the mall.

The mall is still missing interior stores that are worthwhile to go to. I'm not likely to make a special trip inside the mall to eat at Charley's.

Personally, I think there needs to be something to do inside the mall - not just retail.
Yeah, Oakwood has been a while, now that I think about it.

Malls are generally on their decline these days--with the exception of one per metro area, it seems. Like West Town in Knoxville and The Mall in Johnson City are thriving mostly, while the other area malls are fading.

That's why it's puzzling to me that the new owners of this mall poured so many millions into its renovation, and continue to do so. They do need interior attractions in the mall. Not sure what would work at this point.
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