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Lafayette Square slated for $12M redevelopment

March 14, 2008
The new owners of Lafayette Square Mall are plotting a $12 million redevelopment that would add a go-kart track and PC gaming area to anchor space formerly occupied by Lazarus.

New York-based Ashkenazy Acquisition Corp. wants to make maximum use of the 113-acre property, which it bought from locally based Simon Property Group in December. Plans include a sale of out lots, a larger food court, a facade and landscaping upgrade, and a goal to fill vacant anchor spaces by the end of 2008, said Ryan Zickler, a local retail broker who is consulting on the project.

The new owners also are considering a new name for the 1.2-million-square-foot mall: Heartland of Lafayette.

But the most audacious part of the plans is a 75,000-square-foot entertainment center that would include an indoor go-kart track, bumper cars, glow golf, laser tag and amusement games. Party rooms and buffet offerings also are in the works for the former home of Lazarus. And a PC gaming area that would take about 40,000 square feet also is in the works, Zickler said.

The property currently is anchored by Macy's, Sears, Burlington Coat Factory and Steve & Barry's. Two children's play areas are slated to be added at the end of May, and a Wacky Bear Factory should open by mid-summer, said Zickler, who also is leading efforts to develop Legends District SoDo, a mixed-use development proposed for downtown.

To discuss the Lafayette Square plans, visit IBJ's real estate blog, Property Lines.
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