Brookdale Center

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Brookdale Center
Location Brooklyn Center, USA
Coordinates 45°03′24″N 93°19′04″W / 45.0566000°N 93.3179000°W / 45.0566000; -93.3179000[1]Coordinates: 45°03′24″N 93°19′04″W / 45.0566000°N 93.3179000°W / 45.0566000; -93.3179000[1]
Opening date 1962
Closing date 2010
Developer Dayton–Hudson Corporation
Management Brooks Mall Properties
No. of anchor tenants 5

Brookdale Center was a regional shopping mall in Brooklyn Center, Minnesota, which opened in 1962. It became the third mall in the Twin Cities, after Southdale Center and Apache Plaza. After a long decline, the mall closed in 2010.

History[edit]

After the success of Southdale Center in nearby Edina, Minnesota in 1956, Dayton's set their eyes to the immediate northwest Minneapolis suburb of Brooklyn Center, which had also experienced immense growth in the immediate post-war years. The mall was seen as best suited to the area as to not compete with Knollwood Mall, constructed in 1955 in St. Louis Park, or Apache Plaza, constructed in 1961 in the northeast Minneapolis suburb of St. Anthony.

As they had done at Southdale Center, Donaldson's, Dayton's chief downtown competitor, bought land conjoined to the mall complex so they would own the land underneath their store while still being part of the mall. A site was chosen at the intersection of Minnesota State Highway 100 and Minnesota State Highway 152, both busy roads prior to the construction of the Interstate Highways in the Twin Cities area.

Aside from Dayton's and Donaldson's, the mall's original anchors were Sears, J.C. Penney (originally a dry goods only format) and Woolworth. New Dayton's and Donaldson's stores were added when the mall was expanded in 1966–1967. J.C. Penney was enlarged to a full-line store at this time.

The most recent renovation at Brookdale involved the demolition of the northwest corner of the structure. It was rebuilt with a Barnes & Noble, AJ Lomax Famous Labels and Food Court. This expansion was completed in 2004.

Early years[edit]

The mall did brisk business after its opening in 1962. Although its customers were not quite as affluent as the people of Edina, Brookdale Center drew from a large area of the north metro. As Interstate 94 and Interstate 694 were constructed nearby the flow of traffic increased. This brought with it homes, people, and shopping. Several of the major construction projects of the 1960s was the addition of the Pillsbury chain Steak & Ale, as well as a Howard Johnson's restaurant, along with many other businesses and homes.

Middle years[edit]

By the mid 1970s, Brookdale began to change, as newer malls were constructed within the mall's original turf. Northtown Mall, built in 1972 in Blaine was one of the first. The Baby Boomer population of Brooklyn Center also had grown up and moved away from home, leaving their middle aged parents behind. During these years, the mall continued to do well, but the area began to gradually change.

Later years[edit]

By the 1990s, Brooklyn Center had changed a great deal. The ranch homes bought inexpensively by thousands of returning GIs and their young wives were slowly being sold as they aged. Replacing them were people of lower socioeconomic status than the departing original middle-class inhabitants. Unlike Edina, which had featured more expensive construction from the early post-war years, Brooklyn Center had homes that were decidedly middle-class. Brookdale began to lose surrounding businesses. The 2010 census revealed that Brooklyn Center had become the first Twin Cities community to have a plurality of white residents. Whites constitute just 49% of the population of the city, down from 71% in the year 2000.

The mall did not lose an anchor until 2004 with the closing of Mervyn's which came when Target Corporation sold off its department store branch to May Companies. The early 2005 closing of JCPenney was a direct result of a new open air mall store built in nearby Maple Grove. The former JCPenney slot was replaced with Steve & Barry's, although Mervyn's remained vacant. The mall underwent a mild remodeling, including a new food court. However, Brookdale Center was still one of the most original old malls in the Twin Cities area. The former Dayton's (later Macy's) and Sears remained original to the mall, and both stores received some updates.

Steve & Barry's closed its Brookdale store in the fall of 2008 shortly before announcing intentions to close all stores by early 2009 due to bankruptcy liquidation.[2][3] Adding to Brookdale's problems, Macy's announced on January 8, 2009 that it was closing its Brookdale location.[4] In April, Barnes & Noble announced it would close its Brookdale store effective June 13, 2009, citing the recent closures of the other anchors as the primary reason for the store's poor sales performance.[5] Sears became Brookdale Center's only remaining anchor store, and the mall's vacancy rate reached over 50 percent, the highest of any Twin Cities-area shopping center.[6]

Closing of Brookdale[edit]

As the Minneapolis market continued rapid suburbinization and population growth in the early 2000s, Brookdale Center began to suffer. Stronger retail nodes such as Arbor Lakes, The Shops at West End, and Ridgedale Center began to steer customers away from the once thriving node. Continued disinvestment around Brookdale Center also contributed to its rapid decline.

On April 26, 2010, local newspaper Star Tribune reported that Brookdale would close at end of the business day.[citation needed] Owner Jim Schlesinger still owed $52 million on the $54 million loan, and the center was sold in a sheriff's foreclosure auction to Capmark Financial Group Inc. in Horsham, Pa.[7]

The Sears store remained open as they owned the land upon which the store was sited. The Kohl's store, which is detached from the main mall building, remained open under similar circumstances.

Redevelopment of Brookdale Center and the surrounding area[edit]

Multiple redevelopment plans for the failed mall were suggested and attempted.

Then, on October 15, 2010, plans were announced by Gatlin Development Co. Inc., a Tennessee based firm, to acquire the Brookdale Shopping Center and in conjunction with the city of Brooklyn Center to transform the mostly-vacant mall into a new shopping center anchored by a Walmart Supercenter.[8][9] The announcement included the following plans:

  • Rename the center "Shingle Creek Crossing" [8]
  • Tear down most of the existing structure, but leave the recently constructed food court in place [7]
  • Build a 150,000-square-foot (14,000 m2) Wal-Mart Supercenter which would include a grocery store[7]
  • Build or redevelop an additional 435,000 square feet (40,400 m2) of leasable retail space [7]
  • Add eight restaurant pad sites and two multiple-tenant retail or service buildings.[10]
  • Create a green creekscape by resurrecting and excavation Shingle Creek, a stream that was buried in a subterranean culvert under the parking lot when the center was first constructed in the 1960s.[7]

The "Shingle Creek Crossing" announcement came as the city of Brooklyn Center was finishing a Bass Lake Road two million dollar re-landscaping project funded by federal stimulus money.[11] The Bass Lake Road project was part of an overall plan to revitalize and renew the city. As the landscape project was underway, an Embassy Suites hotel opened nearby and ground was broken on a new Federal Bureau of Investigation office complex to the north of Brookdale Center across Interstate I-94.[12] The Three Rivers Park District, operated by Hennepin County, also expressed interest in closing small gaps between trail systems in the area, a move aimed at increasing recreational traffic.[11] The plans for new trails included a stretch next to Shingle Creek with the proposed excavation.[7]

In an interview with the Star Tribune, Steven Lillehaug, Brooklyn Center's director of public works said, "We want to do everything we can on the city's end to help revitalize this area and to put this infrastructure in place to make this a real, ideal location for businesses to come and make their home." [11]

Demolition[edit]

Plans for the demolition of Brookdale Center by Gatlin Development Co. were delayed multiple times due to disputes between Gatlin and Sears, which maintains an open store and expressed concerns about access to their store during the demolition process.[10]

Demolition plans were also delayed as plans for the construction of the new Shingle Creek Crossing were adjusted and finalized. The revised plans added approximately 30,000 square feet (2,800 m2) to the Walmart store, bringing the total to 182,000. The revised plan also includes two more restaurant pads than the original plan and eliminates two multiple-tenant buildings.[10]

On Friday, August 5 of 2011, demolition of Brookdale Mall began.[13]

The Dales[edit]

Brookdale Shopping Center was part of the four "Dale" centers circling the Twin Cities, originally developed by The Dayton Co. The others are Southdale Center, Rosedale Center, and Ridgedale Center.

References[edit]

  1. ^ U.S. Geological Survey Geographic Names Information System: Brookdale Shopping Center
  2. ^ Feyder, Susan (2009-01-02). "Brookdale: A ghost of its former self". Star Tribune. Retrieved 2009-01-09. 
  3. ^ "Steve & Barry's faces closure". -Reuters. 2008-11-18. Retrieved 2008-11-18. 
  4. ^ "Macy's to close 11 stores including Brookdale". -Kare11. 2009-01-08. Retrieved 2009-01-08. 
  5. ^ [1] Minneapolis/St. Paul Business Journal article on Barnes & Noble closure, 2009-04-28. Retrieved 2012-01-22.
  6. ^ Crosby, Jackie (2009-04-28). "Another store is closing the books on Brookdale". Star Tribune. Retrieved 2009-05-01. 
  7. ^ a b c d e f BJORHUS, JENNIFER (2010-10-15). "Wal-Mart jumps in to salvage Brookdale site". Star Tribune. Retrieved 2010-10-15. 
  8. ^ a b Black, Sam (2010-10-15). "Gatlin signs deal to buy Brookdale; plans Walmart". bizjournals.com. Retrieved 2010-10-15. 
  9. ^ Slatton, Shannon (2010-10-15). "Brookdale Mall to become Shingle Creek Crossing". twelve.tv. Retrieved 2010-10-15. 
  10. ^ a b c Young, Jonathan (2011-05-04). "Brookdale demolition delayed while revised plan is considered". mnsun.com. Retrieved 2011-05-04. 
  11. ^ a b c Weinmann, Karlee (2009-07-29). "Stimulus to change roads, landscape". Star Tribune. Retrieved 2009-07-29. 
  12. ^ BACA, MARIA (2010-08-31). "New FBI field office in Brooklyn Center seen as a catalyst". Star Tribune. Retrieved 2010-08-31. 
  13. ^ Furgison, Lisa (2011-08-05). "Demolition begins at Brookdale Mall". twelve.tv. Retrieved 2011-08-05. 

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