from the month of June 2005 are listed below.
of info on the new Natick Mall
Written by Justin on June 20, 2005 at 12:05AM
- The MWDN had an article today
regarding the changing face of retail in the Golden Triangle. Nothing
particular, but the story as a whole is a good read. It's online at http://www.metrowestdailynews.com/businessNews/view.bg?articleid=101792.
- A Boston Globe article revealed
more details about the new Neiman Marcus store. Supposedly the vice
president of development for GGP, Jim Grant, who I believe is based in
Chicago, had hinted to the Natick Planning Board that the Neiman Marcus
store was going to look stunning, and specifically that Neiman Marcus
puts detail into making each of it's stores look different. The Cliff's
Notes (or should I say Sparknotes) of the project are as follows: The
building's silver exterior is inspired by the folds of a dress, as
Neiman Marcus' sales are 80% to women. Construction is now slated to
begin on the entire project in August, possibly delayed due to the
promised July 4th fireworks. And the mall's penthouses are going to be
14-stories tall. The entire story, and many details, are online at http://www.boston.com/business/articles/2005/06/18/upscale_ribbon_unfurls_for_natick_mall/.
- And we actually have a date for
the mall's opening! The 100,000 sq. ft. Neiman Marcus, along with
presumably the rest of the mall, will open on September 7, 2007.
General Growth Manage Luxury Malls?
Written by Justin on June 18, 2005 at 7:13PM
- That's the title of a new
article comparing the Natick Mall Expansion to other General Growth
"luxury-malls" located outside of Washington, D.C. and Chicago, IL.
Check it out here.
speaks out on new Neiman
Written by Justin on June 17, 2005 at 11:10PM
Marcus plans unveiled
Written by Justin on June 16, 2005 at 5:12PM
- For once, the Natick Planning
Board is actually unanimous on the plans for the new Neiman Marcus
store. The board was wowed when the exterior concept for the store, and
there was a nice color picture in today's MWDN. I'll get the photo up
when my scanner gets set back up, but it appears very futuristic yet
refined. It is essentially a tanish color with metallic panels covering
it. The building will also illuminate at night, providing for a very
cool-looking edifice on Speen St.
- Interestingly, one board member
mentioned how the project will become a precedent for future projects
in Natick. Let's compare this to how Framingham's precedent of choice
for future construction is the generic Stop & Shop on Old
Connecticut Path. The new 100,000 sq. ft Neiman Marcus is being
designed rather locally, by Elkis/Manfredi, a firm in Boston. The MWDN
reports on the new Neiman Marcus plans, along with some related Natick
Mall condo news, at http://www.metrowestdailynews.com/localRegional/view.bg?articleid=101531.
time's not a charm for McAuliffe branch
Written by Justin on June 16, 2005 at 10:46PM
- The ongoing Framingham Town
Meeting gave a third chance to the proposed Christa McAuliffe library.
Despite support from state representative Debbie Blumer and Grace
Corrigan, mother of Christa McAuliffe, the library is now pretty much
in the can. The voting was 83-51, with 90 needed to pass. Despite
cutting the size of the library, the library management was criticized
as they were asked to cut the size of the project prior, but had not
due to the belief that they would lose the state grant. At this last
meeting, it was revealed that the library had never asked the state.
- Although the library is not a
retail issue, it is one that I've covered here on F/NR. I have some
controversial views on the project, and if you're interested in seeing
them, check out my recent post at the Beyond
Retail blog. Additionally, the MWDN covered the story at http://www.metrowestdailynews.com/localRegional/view.bg?articleid=101520.
article on Natick Mall condos
Written by Justin on June 12, 2005 at 4:47PM
- Today's MetroWest Daily News
featured an article on people who have already lined up for the condos
slated to be built in the Natick Mall Expansion. The article also
included commentary on the project from numerous perspectives. The
first person to be on the waiting list, an Elisabeth DePristo, who
recently relocated from California and considers herself a "a MetroWest
shopper", a young couple who operate the Edible Arrangements in
Sherwood Plaza, and an elderly couple who have no need for a large
house. The article proves that not all residents want to relocate to
the mall to shop; but that it is rather a housing complex close by to
stores, restaurants and jobs.
- It's interesting that 150
people have already signed up to live in the mall, despite the fact
that the condos have not even been approved by the Natick Planning
Board and that the mall has not even begun construction. Nevertheless,
it appears that all of the future mall residents are excited that they
will be some of the first to reside inside a shopping center. The MWDN
story is online; the address is http://www.metrowestdailynews.com/businessNews/view.bg?articleid=101113.
- And on the site, new photos
abound; shots of the Dick's Sporting Goods' construction and the former
Wonder Bread site.
Mall update/Sarkis Sarkisian resigns!
Written by Justin on June 11, 2005 at 10:56PM
- A recent MWDN noted the
proposed rail trail improvement to be made by the Natick Mall. While
the mall's engineers state that a lengthy tunnel under Speen St. would
cost $4.4 million, and a shorter tunnel would cost $2.5 million, the
chief rail-trail representative believes that a stream-cover style
tunnel would cost a mere $100,000. It is likely that the mall is not
favoring this idea as it would look very tacky and unappealing next to
a multi-million dollar shopping and residential complex. Additionally,
two styles of bridges would cost $2.3 million and $1.3 million,
respectively. Yet, later on in the article, it is cited that an
at-grade crossing would cost $180,000, almost double that of the
cheap-and-ugly tunnel, so it is likely that the mall's pricing is at
least a bit inflated. The story is online at http://www.metrowestdailynews.com/localRegional/view.bg?articleid=100947.
- And, after 17 years of service
to the town of Natick, Community Development director Sarkis Sarkisian
announced his resignation, which became effective on June 3. The
announcement, which came rather abruptly, was made as Sarkisian moves
into a new job in the private sector. Though F/NR has never
particularly agreed with his statements, we wish him the best in his
new position. The MWDN reports on the announcement at http://metrowestdailynews.com/localRegional/view.bg?articleid=100245.
construction delays revealed
Written by Justin on June 8, 2005 at 10:45PM
And that's it! As always, be
sure to send me your comments, corrections and memories through the feedback box. Thanks!
- In the MetroWest Daily News
yesterday, it was announced that the delays in the Lowe's construction
were due to the NSTAR union strike. As it turns out, Lowe's was unable
to request a demolition permit until the building had it's utilities
shut off. While the building's gas line was shut off before the NSTAR
strike, the building remained electrified until two days ago. A
representative for Samuels & Associates, the owner of the 350
Cochituate Rd. parcel, appeared optimistic and noted that the building
was ready to be demolished, pending some interior demolition. The story
is online at http://www.metrowestdailynews.com/businessNews/view.bg?articleid=100728.
- And as a side note on the
Natick Mall, the large green fence has been put back up.
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