Monday, October 5, 2015

Hobby Lobby and Dick's to Headline New Retail Project in Tucker

Northlake to get new retail center

Ben F. Kushner Co. plans to begin demolition in the coming weeks of an office park in Tucker that will be replaced by a new retail center.  "The Meridian at Tucker" will be 200,000 square feet, replacing the 285,000 square foot La Vista Office Park, a one and two-story office park built in 1973.  The 25 acre parcel sits at the corner of Northlake Parkway and LaVista Road, just off I-285.  As it stands now, the parcel, 2175 Northlake Parkway, has access to both Northlake Parkway and LaVista Road.  

I've followed this project for nearly a year during which at least one lawsuit was brought by neighbors fearing an increase in traffic and decrease in home values.  

Thus far, Dick's Sporting Goods, DSW, ROSS Dress For Less and Hobby Lobby have been confirmed as anchor tenants at the new center.  A source indicates that an all important Mattress Firm has also recently committed to the center.  

Hobby Lobby will be the largest tenant at 50,000 square feet followed by Dick's Sporting Goods at 45,000 square feet. ROSS Dress For Less will be 25,000 square feet with DSW slated to be 16,000 square feet.  

The new ROSS Dress For Less marks the chain's return to the Northlake area having previously operated at nearby Northlake Festival over twenty years ago.

The new Dick's could spell trouble for Sports Authority who operates an existing, but dated, store on Northlake Parkway, behind Northlake Mall.  

The project is located in what would become the new City of Tucker.  The parcel sits across the street from The Old Hickory House and is currently home to one and two story offices. 

Many in the neighborhood are hopeful that the new center will spur interest in existing, but underperforming, retail centers in the area.  Northlake Festival and Northlake Mall, both former regional hubs, have both fallen on hard times as anchors have closed, and shoppers have departed for other malls and centers.  

Northlake Festival, built in 1984, is probably in worse shape than the mall, as it has lost virtually all of its anchor tenants. Most recently, Toys R Us, a landmark in the mall for two decades, closed its store at Northlake Festival this past January.  

A local source with knowledge of "The Meridian" indicated that the plan is to "deliver" the spaces to tenants next summer, with openings planned in advance of the year's holiday shopping season.

What shops or restaurants would you like to see added to the roster at The Meridian at Tucker?  What would you like to see happen to Northlake Festival and Northlake Mall?  What is your stance on the proposed cities of Tucker and LaVista Hills? 

Please share your thoughts below.  

44 comments:

ImAndy said...

Interesting about Hobby Lobby. They build very few new stores, in fact I cannot think of any that come to mind. I would have seen them go into the old TRU space before this or wait for the Best Buy to become available with better visibility (only a matter of time).

Anonymous said...

Ugh, the last thing we need is Hobby Lobby bringing its special brand of misogyny to Tucker. I feel sorry for a female employee who will get Hobby Lobby's "religion" and fake science forced on their lady parts. Where do I sign up to protest? Tuckerites, please don't support Hobby Lobby!

Anonymous said...

This seems like such a waste. Why not just renovate or replace Northlake Festival with these tenants instead of building an entirely new center?

Anonymous said...

Good point about renovating an existing place but I love that Tucker is getting a new center. Love Hobby Lobby. It's so much better than Michaels. This area is in desperate need of restaurants also. A CVS or Walgreens would be good too!!!

Anonymous said...

Would love to see Trader Joe's in Tucker/Northlake.

Prefer that this new shopping center bring in some mid to up scale shopping rather than Ross and Mattress Firm.

Northlake Mall leaves a lot to be desired for shoppers in this area even though it could serve three counties if it were upgraded.

Anonymous said...

Tucker already has sporting goods and arts and crafts as well as TJ Maxx, which is nicer than Ross. Not sure that Tucker could support at Trader Joe's (they won't even open in Decatur). That's all pretty negative on my part, so what does Tucker need? The mall is dead, so maybe more apparel shopping options? Gap, Old Navy. Tucker could use another coffee shop as well.

Anonymous said...

ImAndy, Hobby Lobby built a brand new store at the Snellville Exchange shopping center. In fact they are building many new stores across the US in spite of the "progressive" hate and misinformation like that of anonymous 11:41. Hobby Lobby would not be building in Tucker if the demographics were not in place to support the store. :)

Anonymous said...

Northlake needs someone to come in and flatten that awful Northlake Mall. We need an outdoor shopping area like the Forum. Everybody I know has to drive to Snellville or The Forum or Buckhead to buy anything of quality. If we had a better shopping area we would have better eating places. All boats would rise.

Sam C said...

I would like to have Northlake Shopping Center replaced with a mixed use project containing restaurants, retail and condos. Northlake Festival could be rebuilt as a new shopping center with popular retail outlets.

Anonymous said...

Tucker does have a Starbucks and used to have a Mighty Joe Espresso (independent shop) in the Ingles shopping center. Right now, Coco Cakes is where Mighty Joe used to be. Coco makes excellent cakes, highly recommend them (our office once got cake from him).

Would be neat if N'lake was mostly leveled, rebuilt as an outdoor shopping center, or at least a shopping center with a lot of outdoor walking and patio areas.

~mindspringyahoo

Anonymous said...

The problem with the area is that so few businesses have been successful there that it's not going to attract new upscale businesses.

misangela said...

I encourage everyone to boycott Hobby Lobby for the reasons stated above. Horrible company.

As a new Tucker resident, I'd like to have better shopping available. NOT Ross or other lower quality stores, but more good stuff like Old Navy, Bed Bath and Beyond, etc. Tucker has a higher average income than the low end neighborhoods that have Ross, I HOPE. I like the idea of razing the Mall and turning it into mixed use, but keep the higher end stores like Macy's and JCP.

We need more dining FOR SURE. The first thing we noticed when we moved up here is the dearth of dining and bars. Surely the higher incomes of this area could support better dining?? We consistently drive to Decatur when we go out - and I sort of regret moving to Tucker, honestly.

There is SO much room for improvement in this area! We'd really love to see things change for the better!

Anonymous said...

Will the fringe ever learn that screaming boycott and spreading propaganda does not work in their favor? Why do people move to an area and are totally oblivious to the income demographics and what the community will support? These mythical higher incomes like that of another poster are always interesting to hear about. Thank you!

Anonymous said...

JCP upscale? I thought it was half a step from death's door.

Anonymous said...

The Tucker area has already had stores like Old Navy, Gap, Express, etc. Northlake Mall and North Dekalb Mall were once great malls with plenty of national retail chains that failed. With that being said, what makes you think any retailer wants to re enter the area? Maybe if the owners of Northlake Festival invested in upgrades and renovations, maybe they'd get some new tenants. It worked for Loehmans Plaza on Druid Hills.

The Anti-Gnostic said...

If you want neighbors who shop at Restoration Hardware instead of Hobby Lobby, you have to pay for them. HL is a well-run company supplying a popular product at which people can work and shop, or not, as they please. Effete striverpoors who can only afford Tucker should accept their environs.

Rosalind Van Landingham said...

Any retail area that hasn't seen much in the way of new development for decades is going to look run down and neglected. I believe this new retail development will serve as the necessary impetus to see sorely needed improvements and upgrades at both Northlake Mall and Northlake Festival. After this new retail has been around for 6 months or so, if the mall and Northlake Festival still haven't stepped up their game, we as homeowners, residents and THEIR potential shoppers should start complaining to the management. I guess it's a chicken and egg thing, but if they want to keep our shopping dollars here, they need to raise the bar on our shopping options and update their exterior/interior appearances.

So, Step 1 is this nice-looking new shopping center - check! Step 2 is improve what we have - hello Mall & Festival? And if we spend our money here, Step 3 just might be a major renovation to the mall - call it the Northlake Forum. Yeah!

By the way, Mr. Anti-Gnostic, there are plenty of $500K+ neighborhoods around here.

Anonymous said...

"there are plenty of $500K+ neighborhoods around here"

Home prices are irrelevant . So are your potential shoppers with alleged higher incomes. We all know there are still plenty of people that are house (and automobile) poor with little disposable income.

Developers build based on the target market. They rely on INCOME demographics. Right now they just see the need to put basic retailers back in place. You have to give these retailers MUCH more time than 6 months. At least 5 years if not more of income growth and retail sales increases.

Renovating the Mall or Festival could be too costly and risky. Developers are going to build new when they want to and you cannot demand otherwise. Even with all that, developers may overlook the area all together and the Tucker area could lose what they have once again.

Rosalind Van Landingham said...

Okay, I skipped a few steps allowing for everyone's imagination to fill in the blanks. BUT... yes indeed, a major renovation would take years. But I'm only talking about other retailers upgrading and remodeling. That't not too big of an investment. Remodeling and new stock plus this new retail should bring about an increase in business for the mall & festival. If the older stores haven't started improving, I do think complaining to them would help incentivize them to do so. The more dollars we get to stay around here, the better chance of a major renovation down the road. In the meantime, a year after the new shopping center opens, we should be noticing improvements in the retail landscape.

In other words, Step 1.5 - shop at the new shopping center to ENCOURAGE existing stores to remodel and/or re-stock. I didn't think they were going to do it because we demanded it.... But if we can show them it would be to their advantage (via more money in the local economy), they'll be encouraged to.

Retail is very fluid. We don't know how to change this shopping area unless and until we begin. Even the developers with all their information can't be sure. The new shopping center is a good start for us.

I'm not even going to mention the other things I notice happening around here because I'm not going to spend all night debating you about whether or not the new shopping center will improve the local economy (with our "alleged" disposable incomes). The short answer is, it will.

Anonymous said...

Bless your heart Roaslind, and best of luck with your delusions of granduer in Tucker!

The Anti-Gnostic said...

"Rosalind Van Landingham"

Uber!

Anonymous said...

I wish they'd give Northlake Mall the same overhaul that Cumberland Mall was given. A Bed Bath and Beyond would be nice in the area as would more dining options.

Anonymous said...

Hobby Lobby has a store in the Wal Mart shopping center off Hwy 78 on Rockbridge Rd.. ..

Anonymous said...

Northlake Mall is the saddest, most pathetic excuse for a mall that I have ever seen. Well, North Dekalb is the most sad, but poor Northlake Mall, with all of it's sports shoes, jewelry stores, and what's with Macy's and that depressing florescent lighting? How does that happen?

Rosalind Van Landingham said...

Anti-Gnostic: I know, I laughed when I saw it. I must have set this account up a decade ago but I figured WTH. It was just fun to say at the time... couldn't change it, so there it is! :)

Anonymous said...

I'm leaving already, after 35 unhappy years at Northlake, plus many unfortunate instances with an inept Dekalb County, so I don't really care...Trader Joe's would have been nice...oh well, I'll have one near my new home....can't wait any longer for "things to improve", I'll be dead by then.

Anonymous said...

I would LOVE to see a Trader Joes come into our area. Most of the families in our area travel the distance to go to the neighboring ones. They would become the primary grocery store for us, if it were more convenient. I also agree with the idea of bringing in stores like the ones in Brookhaven Town and The Forum. It would do a lot for our area! Most of our get togethers and meetings take place in these shopping centers. I would love to give the support to OUR neighborhood, provided it was an option.

Unknown said...

Exactly... needs to be some proof of success with these new businesses coming in, that it will attract other businesses...

Anonymous said...

A G R E E E E !!! Thank you!

Anonymous said...

Trader Joe's and Forum will be wonderful !

Anonymous said...

Anti-Gnostic?

Anonymous said...

Hope thy will HEAR you !

Anonymous said...

In the nearly 30 years we've lived in Tucker and bought at the surrounding stores and Northlake Mall, I've seen the decrease in the number of customers and an increase in struggling stores. In conversation with others, one conclusion reached is that people have thought it necessary to go to Perimeter or Lenox to shop. When that began to be commonplace, our stores really began to slide. Bottom line: if we want better quality merchandise and stores, we have to make it economically viable for them to come and stay...

Anonymous said...

I would love to see a Fresh Market in NL and we desperately need some better stores in this area. Meridian may be a good start, and I, for one, welcome Hobby Lobby. It's a great store.

Anonymous said...

I lover the Tucker area because of it's convenience to the interstate and other cities near by. However in the past 14 years that I have lived in the area I definitely feel as though the residents and businesses in the Tucker area have settled for sub-par status. Northlake Mall is a joke - it's so old that I'm surprised anybody shops there anymore, especially if Kohls is the up and coming anchor store that people want. Macy's and Sears are the worst of the mega stores as one feels as if they are the ugly step-child that Corporate has forgotten about and doesn't even care if they remain open. I feel as if I am being forced to lower my standards by having to shop the stores in this area.

We deserve so much more and better quality of choices. Why can't we get a Fresh Market or Traders Joes? Bring us a Bed Bath and Beyond, or Ted's Montana Grill, or even a Maggiano's would be nice. We don't need another hobby and craft store - Michael's is still open (how I don't know!). The Blue Ribbon Grill is a poor excuse of a restaurant. We can do better than Ross for less!! The proposed stores for this new "mall" are tagging Tucker as "lower income, lower quality". And that is so not the case.

What's detouring quality restaurants and business from coming to Tucker? The fact that we are stuck with this look of dilapidation and no one seems to care. If we want good quality stores and restaurants, then we need to bulldoze North Lake Festival and Northlake Mall, get ride of the past, and look to the future.

Anonymous said...

I would love to see a Costco and some form of pasta style restaurant.

Anonymous said...

I would like to see "Fresh to Order " in Tucker I usually go to Cobb.

Bacchus said...

Starting with a Dicks will be the canary in the coal mine for other new retail. If Dicks does well, then there is proof to other retailers that the local market will support further detail in similar price points. A Trader Joes would be great to compete with the new Brookhaven Whole Foods and nearby Kroger and Publix stores, though grocery seems to be already saturated here. We frequently dine out in Decatur, VaHi, Brookhaven, Buckhead.

Bottom line is, most of our shopping is done between Lenox and Brookhaven, with some dining in Decatur. If some of those retailers and more restaurants were in Tucker, most of my money would stay in Tucker.

Anonymous said...

Tucker area no longer has the wealth or demographics to support high-end shopping as does Perimeter Mall, Lenox and Cumberland. You can't even fill up at the local gas station or walk through the Kroger parking lot without being pan handled and fearing for your safety. I hope for the best with this new shopping complex. I've worked within a stones throw of it for 32 years. Maybe they'll get the ball rolling in the right direction.

Anonymous said...

The exact opposite: the area is growing and income demographics have increased significantly. The local retail that caters to lower-middle class has become irrelevant with the change in demographics. Locals shop in Decatur, Buckhead, Perimeter, The Forum; Northlake has become a pass-through district. Creating reasons for locals to stop and shop will boost additional growth.

Anonymous said...

I would guess that the Northlake Festival redevelopment hinges upon the lease of the cell tower in the center of the parking lot. The payments from that maybe worth more than the store leases themselves. However, redevelopment is moving quickly in this area…A new Zaxby's on Chamblee Tucker Road and the coming Kroger marketplace there as well… new projects being built in Tucker... And the steady progress from Chamblee towards the Northlake area as well…with all that real estate right on the edge of the perimeter, it's just a matter of time. As for the Northlake mall, it has new owners… It will never be a great mall again but it is a prime piece of real estate in a growing area.

Anonymous said...

I have lived in Tucker over 40 years and I am still waiting for a good place to shop and a decent place to eat. We became a city so lets get busy and voice our opinions. No more cheap dumpy stores like Ross and mattress sales in our area. Hobby lobby is OK, but I do not shop in these stores. Let's get a Trader Joe's if that's what we want. Who is the MAYOR, let's bug him , let's stop whining and make things happen.

Jm said...

Lavista has a nice selection of businesses and the community around it is ungrateful for them from what I saw reading this post then the comments. I really like the restaurants too like O'Charley's and stuff and don't get the whole notion of "we do not have enough restaurants we need to start tearing some down and making new nice ones." Seriously, around the Northlake and Lavista area you guys probably have like 50 restaurants and where I live we only have like 4 left, so be grateful that you live in Lavista because I don't think it gets any better than that.

Anonymous said...

We just moved to Tucker from Brookhaven, it seems to us that the area is growing and the real estate in the area is going up a lot. We need places like PURE and NEWKS to come to the area and some good upscale stores so we do not have to go to Perimeter or Lenox Malls. The homes around Northlake are un the up 300000 and some more valuable than that.I am sure that some good stores will do very well. Why not tear down very old Northlake Mall and bring some good stores like Container Store, Bed Bath and Beyond and such. We need to keep our money in our neighborhood.