Toledo Talk

Southwyck mall

Does anyone know what is happening with Southwyck mall?

created by turbo on Oct 11, 2009 at 08:55:41 pm     Comments: 32

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It has been torn down - what will become of the space...I don't know. I hope they do an outdoor mall there like they have done elsewhere.

posted by OhioKimono on Oct 11, 2009 at 10:24:28 pm     #

"As part of the much-anticipated de-malling of Southwyck, the enclosed mall will be opened up to a pedestrian friendly open-air center.

The Village at Southwyck re-establishes one of Northwest Ohio’s strongest retail addresses and re-envisions it also as a new gathering spot for a strong and well-established market.

Built on the site of the former Southwyck Mall, the redevelopment will showcase over 550,000 s.f. of retail, restaurants, anchors and services, master planned around a handsome open-air village design. Fronting on State Route 20/Reynolds Road, over 29,000 vehicles per day pass the site which is only a half mile north of the interchange with the Ohio Turnpike. The demographics are solid. Within a five mile radius there is a population of 157,000 people, with average household incomes of nearly $82,000.00."

posted by OhioKimono on Oct 11, 2009 at 11:00:09 pm     #  

Who wants to go to an open air mall in the winter. I prefer enclosed malls.

posted by deere1 on Oct 12, 2009 at 08:37:14 am     #  

"Within a five mile radius (plus a couple more) there is..."

Already a two open-air malls. A nice-closed in mall. And with a dwindling population, how many more malls do we need? Really?

Unless they are committed to bringing in new retailers--like Crate & Barrel, Urban Outfitters, Anthropologie, or anything we don't already have in the area--it's pointless.

posted by toledolen on Oct 12, 2009 at 08:51:27 am     #  

The days of the massive enclosed mall are dwindling, deere1. The trend is toward smaller, localized centers with the accompanying lower maintenance and utility costs. There will probably still be a place for large regional malls, especially as destination magnets, but I doubt that there will be a return to the construction-mania of the 1970s and 1980s, much of which was fueled by favorable real estate tax policies that promoted over-development.

posted by historymike on Oct 12, 2009 at 09:00:55 am     #  

The outdoor open air malls ahve been popular world wide for years now. I use to live in California where open air malls were the standard (California is not all sunshine and perfect weather as the movies will have you think).

I like the open air malls, and the outdoor shopping is just fine if paired with things like little fire pits.

posted by OhioKimono on Oct 12, 2009 at 09:16:53 am     #  

Once demo wraps up, the property will probably sit vacant for a while - think the Dillin company said at least a couple years or until enough interest has been generated to start the new development.

Indoor or outdoor, it'd be great to see something there. The shuttered restaurants and hotels nearby need to come down, too.

posted by housebeats on Oct 12, 2009 at 10:58:38 am     #  

A friend of mine said that she had heard that a new Krogers could possibly be built in the space and that the one on Reynolds and Glendale would be torn down. Personally, I don't think we need another shopping center, whether it be enclosed or not.

posted by inga on Oct 12, 2009 at 12:02:35 pm     #  

lord knows we don't need ANOTHER krogers in toledo.

posted by upso on Oct 12, 2009 at 12:03:13 pm     #  

Heh. I lnow - let's build four big box drug stores there - one on each corner of the property.

posted by historymike on Oct 12, 2009 at 01:27:01 pm     #  

Just what we need...more restraunts.

Either way, its better than a rundown vacant mall.

posted by OhioKimono on Oct 12, 2009 at 01:36:23 pm     #  

What was at Southwyck Mall before it was Southwyck Mall? Sorry if I missed a previous post that mentions this...sometimes I pretend to have a life.

posted by justareviewer on Oct 12, 2009 at 06:37:17 pm     #  

A corn field.

posted by valbee on Oct 12, 2009 at 06:56:00 pm     #  

Actually, I don't know that for sure. It could have been some other crop. Or just openness.

What I do recall is that when I was little and we'd drive from our house near Reynolds Corners to my grandparents' house in Maumee, there wasn't much along Reynolds except for the Jesse James Drive-in... and the Maumee Drive-in as well.

posted by valbee on Oct 12, 2009 at 06:57:51 pm     #  

If the Dillin mafia lets this go for a short time, then we have the best chance of having it lay fallow for a long time, as it sanely needs to. After all, we're in the Great Depression II, and building out a huge retail space is intensely foolish. Consumer incomes are falling. Credit has vanished.

posted by GuestZero on Oct 13, 2009 at 12:53:43 pm     #  

^^lol. Interesting opinion.

I hope whatever happens of it, we get a decent grocery store out of the deal. Even with the 3 Krogers in the area, they all have terrible selection. We need a Kroger similar to the King Road store.

posted by slowsol on Oct 13, 2009 at 01:07:57 pm     #  


Actually that will be in Rossford (or the Rossford edge of Toledo) if issue 3 passes. So I have heard.


posted by CynicalCounsel on Oct 13, 2009 at 01:11:49 pm     #  

Mike said "The days of the massive enclosed mall are dwindling, deere1. The trend is toward smaller, localized centers with the accompanying..."

Mike is right, but when I look at places like Levis Commons or Fallen Timbers my impression is, wow, this all looks like its from the late 19th or early 20th century and they are cheeky enough to say it is "something new"? I'll bet fifty-years from now someone will come out with a new idea to put all those shops under one enclosed roof so people can get around more easily without dodging cars or bad weather!

posted by ilovetoledo on Oct 13, 2009 at 01:29:41 pm     #  

I don't see any sort of mall being built at any time. Considering that Fallen Timbers is going bankrupt and is completely unsuccessful, I cannot imagine retail going up there. They key to any mall or shopping center whether indoor or outdoor is for the developer to secure major "anchor" stores and businesses.

Think of it this way...if you own a retail store such as a Footlocker shoe store or Radio Shack are you going to risk signing a lengthy lease in a shopping center/mall without something (the Anchors) to bring people into the center?

What I mean by Anchors are large retail companies...Dillards, Macy's, Best Buy, Target..."Big Box" stores with power to bring people into a center. Without at least 4 or 5 of these companies, the smaller chains such as Radio Shack, the Limited, Gap etc...will never commit to come to the mall.

Also the fact that the economy is dead and retail is suffering I highly doubt that expansion in Toledo, OH is a profitable option for retail. I wish it would change and I am sure it will with time but this will be years from now in my opinion.

posted by douglasadietz on Oct 13, 2009 at 02:31:27 pm     #  

Sep 25,2009 WTOL story :

Mayor Finkbeiner said a Kroger and a horse farm are among those interested in the former Southwyck Mall location. He said they've even attracted an eye doctor at the old Bootleggers.

posted by jr on Oct 13, 2009 at 04:37:16 pm     #  


posted by upso on Oct 13, 2009 at 05:12:04 pm     #  

Personally, I would love to see a green space there.

posted by OhioKimono on Oct 13, 2009 at 05:15:42 pm     #  

It may be that enclosed malls are out of favor, but I still prefer them totheopen airone's.I would never go to one of those in the winter.

posted by deere1 on Oct 13, 2009 at 05:21:49 pm     #  

First, Fallen Timbers is neither going bankrupt nor completely unsuccessful. The parent company General Growth is filing chapter 11 reorganization and the mall is doing fine.

I agree that a shopping center needs anchors to support the smaller stores. With the current economy expected to take up to a couple years to improve, it's unlikely that any anchors will sign on until then.

If the new Southwyck wants to compete with Fallen Timbers, they should get different anchors. Sears and Macy's, although somewhat generic and already in 50% of the malls in the country, would be likely candidates. Nearby Airport Highway already has enough big box stores and the Southwyck site is only so big.

It'd be nice if upscale, out-of-town anchors like Nordstrom or Parisian joined in, but I'm not sure if the local market could support something as upscale as those chains.

A modern Kroger would also be welcome, but a mall site would be better suited to a premium grocery like the Fresh Market. Maybe they could put Kroger on one of those closed hotel sites?

posted by housebeats on Oct 13, 2009 at 05:37:29 pm     #  

I'm with you, OhioKimono. Plain, unadulterated green space is fine by me also. I don't want another shopping center-I rarely patronize any of the others and I don't want another Kroger's either. Having the three in the south end is overkill already.

posted by inga on Oct 13, 2009 at 08:35:51 pm     #  

"With the current economy expected to take up to a couple years to improve, it's unlikely that any anchors will sign on until then."

How is the current local economy any different today than it was four or five years ago, and how will it be different five years from now?

We've had a similar discussion before. I started this March 2005 thread titled More shopping !!! (22 Comments) by saying:

"I thought the economy sucked around here? How can this area support all of these stores?"

The March 2005 Blade story said:

This May could go down as one of the most active months ever for the Toledo area retail scene. More than 130 stores possible.

posted by jr on Oct 13, 2009 at 09:32:58 pm     #  

Excerpts from State of Toledo Speeches by former Toledo mayor, Jack Ford:

January 2003 :

But there looms across our land economic hardships. The nation as a whole is struggling. 45 states have budget deficits...counties and cities, including Toledo, face rising costs and falling revenues.

February 2004 :

But times have been difficult everywhere. The national economy is slow. We are in the midst of a jobless recovery. And national policy has hurt Toledo's economy. Clearly, we have made some good things happen for our city. But these are tough economic times.

January 2005 :

Midwest cities, especially those dependent on manufacturing, have been hurting for well over three years. In fact, economic times have been downright brutal. In the U.S. Conference of Mayors "Metro Agenda for America's Future" report it was predicted that Toledo's manufacturing job loss numbers are not likely to rebound until 2009.

Whoa, that's a prediction that could be considered a miss.

Five to seven years ago, the retail developers must have had a different economic view than Ford did. With what Ford was saying, does it make sense that so many new stores were opening and being built? I'm guessing the developers back then were looking beyond the next five years, which is about where we are at now.

Again, from that March 2005 Blade story that discussed Town Center at Levis Commons, Westfield Shoppingtown, and Shops at Fallen Timbers.

In all, the three projects have brought or may bring more than 130 new stores to metro Toledo, and many of those have area outlets now.

And that was before Westgate announced its redevelopment plans. The new Westgate began opening new stores in the spring of 2007. And look at all the retail that has opened in recent years along Route 20 east of I-75 in the Perrysburg and Rossford areas.

Is it possible that Rossford, Perrysburg, and Maumee can support all this new retail but Toledo cannot? The Westfield mall and Westgate are close enough to Sylvania and Ottawa Hills residents. When we say Toledo's economy, are we really saying the Toledo-area? Do we include the surrounding communities in the discussion? I think so.

Look at the new Bass Pro in northern Wood County, which opened in the summer of 2008. It still sits alone. None of the expected development around that store has occurred yet. Could be timing. Maybe in a few years when economic conditions supposedly improve, something will happen. But that store is close to the Route 20 retail sprawl.

If Toledo's economy was "downright brutal" earlier this decade with "rising costs and falling revenues," what is it now? The Toledo economy allegedly has gone from bad to terrible, and we hope it will improve back up to bad in two to five years. And somehow that's good enough to support all the new retail that's opened in the past five years in metro Toledo.

Maybe the Toledo area has hit a saturation point for new retail. Too much new has been built this decade for an area with a population that is stagnant or slightly declining. But a lot of land has been gobbled up. Population numbers flat-lining, and developed land increasing. Do the math. A lot of old, vacant developed properties must be lying around.

Carty's Southwyck horse farm is starting to sound reasonable, and it's downright brutal to use the word "reasonable" with anything coming from Carty.

posted by jr on Oct 13, 2009 at 11:04:46 pm     #  

I think a lifestyle center there is do-able. They're not talking about building anything until the credit markets resume lending, and by then the local picture may have improved a little, too. Think positively.

Dillin's original plan was for a mixed use development like Levis Commons, with shops on the ground floor, offices upstairs, and a strong residential component, so it's not going to be just more retail. I think the original plans called for 2 anchors, a few restaurants, and around 40 specialty stores. The old Southwyck had 3 anchors, at least a dozen restaurants, and about 100 specialty stores.

Speaking from personal experience (I live right next door), I hardly ever make the 10 mile trek out to Franklin Park or the 8 mile hike out to Fallen Timbers. It'd be nice if the people who live out this way (157,000 within a 5 mile radius; average family income $82,000) had a solid shopping option that wasn't all discount-focused like at Spring Meadows.

This part of town, despite its relatively small land size, is actually a big trade area. 30,000 people work in Maumee alone, all the interstates intersect here, and it'll only get busier when the new Route 24 opens. Not to mention there are a good number of families with jobs and disposable income who live nearby.

posted by housebeats on Oct 14, 2009 at 04:22:24 pm     #  

housebeats assessment is excellent. Southwyck was my preferred place to shop. I hate hiking out to Westfield, have never gone to Fallen Timbers, and find Spring Meadows too " discounted" as a shopping source. The right mix of stores would certainly bring me as a shopper to the old Southwyck location. Southwyck died because it was mismanaged.

posted by holland on Oct 14, 2009 at 04:57:31 pm     #  

"Southwyck died because it was mismanaged"...agree, and the gangsta & punk population certainly contributed to its demise as well. A part of the mismanagement.

posted by justareviewer on Oct 14, 2009 at 05:52:16 pm     #  

Yup. You had to get out of there before school let out.

posted by holland on Oct 14, 2009 at 06:00:31 pm     #  

I wouldn't say Southwyck died because of punks and less desirable people I mean seriously do you remember "Franklin Park" when it wasn't owned by Westfield? All thugged out!

Southwyck died because it was dated...they lost anchors and never replaced them and the final nail in the coffin was when they broke ground for Fallen Timbers, that was where they really dropped the ball.

Southwyck is a much more desirable and accessible location than Fallen, it's a shame the Owners didn't see it that way otherwise we may have had a new center a few years back.

posted by douglasadietz on Oct 15, 2009 at 08:41:17 am     #