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Wednesday, Jan 16, 2019
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University Mall plans large-scale redevelopment

— Redevelopment plans for University Mall call for the addition of three anchors and two freestanding restaurants that have yet to be named.

The enclosed mall common area between the former JCPenney building and the remaining mall will be demolished to make way for a “lifestyle addition,” an outside area filled with lush landscaping, seating areas and water features. A health club will also be added.

Mall owner RD Management LLC, which acquired the property last year for $29.5 million, released its design plans for the first phase of the major renovation Monday. Construction could begin as early as the first quarter of 2016.

University Mall is at 2200 E. Fowler Ave., just west of the University of South Florida.

The first phase of the renovation will include “significant changes” to the mall’s western wing. Some 246,500 square feet of retail will be renovated with the new anchors, and the restaurants will be constructed on out-parcels along Fowler, according to CBRE Group Inc., which announced the plan.

“With this redevelopment project, RD Management is reaffirming University Mall’s commitment as a pre-eminent shopping destination in Tampa Bay now and well into the future,” said CBRE’s Keily Potter, University Mall marketing manager. “We are completely reimagining the shopping, dining and entertainment experience for our residents and visitors, alike.”

The property, which houses Macy’s, Sears, Burlington Coat Factory and Dillard’s, underwent an $11 million interior and exterior renovation in 2008. In October 2014, it added its first new major tenant, Studio Movie Grill, an upscale dine-in movie theater.

RD Management is ranked the 30th largest retail real estate owner in the United States. It is a privately held real estate investment and development company responsible for more than 200 shopping centers in 26 states, the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico.

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