Nordstrom Rack, Chicago-based food chain Portillo’s and an Apple store are just a few of many shops and restaurants residents want to see at the new Greenwood Town Center.
Construction of the $90 million, 700,000-square-foot shopping center is set to begin next year with completion in 2017. The developer, Gershman Partners, has put up signs and is looking for stores and restaurants to lease space in the shopping center but has not announced any deals that have been struck.
What residents want are stores and restaurants they currently have to leave the southside to find, such as a Fossil watch store, Banana Republic and H&M clothing stores, restaurants like P.F. Chang’s, a Trader Joe’s grocery store and an IMAX movie theater.
Several factors play into a company’s decision to add a location in the same region or state. Businesses will research growth in population and income, and those will be main factors for their location, said Matt Will, a financial economist and associate professor at University of Indianapolis.
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“Whoever does research for that developer has identified growth in population and income, and that logic is not inconsistent with other development,” Will said.
Capacity and travel time also are reasons to look into a second location.
If a restaurant is at capacity almost every night, then expanding would make sense. And the company would likely look to expand in a community where the travel time to the first location deterred residents from coming, Will said.
Travel time between a current location, such as the Apple store on the northside that residents would like to see duplicated here, and a new location also plays a role, Will said.
Greenwood Mayor Mark Myers wants the Greenwood Town Center to bring retail, entertainment and dining that isn’t already in the city. Different shopping and restaurant destinations is how Myers expects the Greenwood Town Center and the Greenwood Park Mall to co-exist, he said.
Residents aren’t sure both the mall and a new town center can be sustainable less than 4 miles from one another.
“I see it as unneeded,” Greenwood resident Lindsey Hartman said.
“I realize the city wants to be a destination for shopping right off the interstate, but with Greenwood having a mall already, I don’t think we have the market to sustain such a large number of high-end retail stores.”
Will has similar concerns for Greenwood’s regional mall. Once the new town center opens, Will said, he expects Greenwood Park Mall to exist on a smaller scale than it does right now and one day could shut down.
Random Andrews is the co-owner of Sir Vapes-A-Lot, on County Line Road across from the Greenwood Park Mall. He said he doesn’t expect the new town center to take away from the daily traffic that he sees coming and going.
“I’d be happy with anything at Greenwood Town Center — we need more, high-end fashion options,” Andrews said. “We need some extra variety on the southside.”
Kyle Wells, an employee at a Greenwood Park Mall retailer, thinks the new center will help get Greenwood more recognition and bring more options for shoppers.
“Change isn’t always a bad thing. I’m definitely going to embrace Greenwood Town Center,” Wells said.
Katy Davis owns a photography business and has considered opening a studio in downtown Greenwood. A new town center less than 2 miles from downtown would give her more reason to open that studio because more traffic and visitors would be entering the city off I-65, she said.
Visitors could leave Greenwood Town Center and want to explore the rest of the city, which would help bring people to small, local businesses, Davis said.
“Greenwood Town Center is an absolute fantastic idea. Greenwood Park Mall will always have its place, but you can only have so many shops in the mall before there’s no space left,” Davis said. “It’s going to bring better retail, more jobs. I think we really need something like this.”