Town Center at Boca Raton

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Town Center at Boca Raton
Location Boca Raton, Florida
 United States
Coordinates 26°21′57″N 80°08′01″W / 26.365820°N 80.133551°W / 26.365820; -80.133551Coordinates: 26°21′57″N 80°08′01″W / 26.365820°N 80.133551°W / 26.365820; -80.133551
Address 6000 Glades Road
Opening date August 13, 1980
Developer Arvida Corp., Homart Development Company, and Federated Department Stores, Inc.
Management Simon Property Group, Inc.
Owner Simon Property Group, Inc.
Architect RTKL Associates, Inc.
No. of stores and services 200+
No. of anchor tenants 6 (5 open, 1 vacant)
Total retail floor area 1,700,000 square feet (160,000 m2)
No. of floors 1 (2 in Crate & Barrel, Forever 21, Neiman Marcus, Nordstrom, Saks Fifth Avenue, the Macy's parking garage and former Sears, soon to be GameTime, 3 in Macy's and Bloomingdale's and the Nordstrom parking garage)
Website Official website

Town Center at Boca Raton (also known as Town Center Mall or Boca Town Center) is an upscale shopping mall in Boca Raton, Florida. The center features 200 retail and service shops, five department stores (Bloomingdale's, Macy's, Neiman Marcus, Nordstrom, and Saks Fifth Avenue), and a variety of casualty dining venues with one vacant anchor space last occupied by Sears. It is the largest enclosed and conventional shopping mall in Palm Beach County, and the third largest by square feet in South Florida, behind both Broward's neighbor Sawgrass Mills in central Broward County and Aventura Mall in northeastern Miami-Dade County (also owned by Simon).

History[edit]

When the mall was built in a similar fashion to the Broward Mall which opened two years before, a Jordan Marsh store occupied the present Saks Fifth Avenue location and a Burdines was in the present Macy's with Sears as the west end anchor and an empty pad in the present Neiman Marcus space that would later be filled by Lord & Taylor. A T.G.I. Friday's (closed and demolished in 2005) and later an L&N Seafood Grill (then Stir Crazy) were located adjacent to the main entrance west of Burdines and east of Sears. The shopping center also featured a New York City theme with a round black station clock, living vegetation below a series of atriums, and several distinctive wishing fountains.

The Saks Fifth Avenue location has the most complicated history out of all their stores. The spot was originally opened as Jordan Marsh in 1980 and was husbanded in 1991 when Jordan Marsh was purchased by Allied Stores. Meanwhile in 1992, Mervyns and took an $80 million bid to take over seven Florida stores from Allied, including the Broward and Town Center stores with JCPenney taking over the store at Altamonte Mall. This store operated as Mervyns until 1995 as a result of having another Boca store on 441 and Palmetto Park Road which then became Bealls and is now split into Hobby Lobby and Aldi. Moreover, while Mervyns sold some of its Miami area stores including the Broward store to Dillard's in 1997, the Little Rock retailer did not have enough upscale merchandise to support a Boca Raton store, so instead, that building was refurbished for a larger Saks Fifth Avenue, which had a two year construction period until 1999 including a new second floor entrance to the new parking deck.

Renovations and expansions[edit]

A significant expansion in 1988 brought more shops, including a three-story Bloomingdale's, whose store at the mall was the second in Florida, and a Saks Fifth Avenue, which in 1999 moved into the space provided when the building housed Mervyns until 1995. At the time, the mall had almost exactly the same anchor lineup as six other South Florida malls and the newly opened Pembroke Lakes Mall. Lord & Taylor closed in 2002 as part of their early 2000s restructuring, and was promptly demolished for Neiman Marcus, who expressed interest in entering the area market as early as 1987 and opened their newly built store at the site. Also in 2005, Fridays had closed, having another nearby presence, and was demolished from the shopping center. In 2007, The Cheesecake Factory opened an experimental restaurant called Grand Lux Cafe on the site, featuring a broader choice of international cuisine.

The Macy's at the Town Center

Between 1999 and 2000, a complete renovation took place. The mall built a new concourse within Florida's first Nordstrom store. The food court's seating was reconfigured to accommodate more people, and a Waldenbooks (which closed in 2010) opened on its southern side. Mall entrances were remodeled with sun canopies and decorative towers to add exterior appeal. Parking layouts were rearranged to allow a three-story parking garage at the future Nordstrom, and a two-story garage at the recently refurbished Burdines (now Macy's) and larger Saks (former Jordan Marsh and Mervyns and was to be taken over by Dillard's before being remodeled). A lifestyle center called The Terrace at Town Center was completed in 2007 featuring Crate & Barrel and Youfit Health Clubs. The mixed-use development is in between Bloomingdale's and the Nordstrom parking garage.

On January 4, 2018, Sears announced that its Boca Raton location would be among the 103 that the company plans to shut down nationwide, making it the mall's last original anchor to close. The store closed on April 8, 2018. A day later, Simon announced plans to redevelop the two story space with Dave & Buster's on the second floor and shops and restaurants on the first floor, which is scheduled to be complete in late 2019. It is one of seven malls owned by Simon to redevelop a shuttered Sears. [1]

2007 murders[edit]

In 2007, several murders at the mall drew national attention. In March, a 52-year-old woman was kidnapped and murdered. In December, a 47-year-old woman and her 7-year-old daughter were also kidnapped, and later found bound and shot in the head in the woman's SUV in the mall parking lot. This case was featured on America's Most Wanted and caused host John Walsh to say he believed a serial killer to be in the city. Though there is no forensic evidence to suggest the murders were committed by the same person, the similarities in the cases led police to believe they were related. In addition, a similar incident occurred at the mall in August, in which a woman and her 2-year-old son were kidnapped and tied found in the car, but left alive. To this day, the murders all remain unsolved.[2][3][4][5]

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