Originally Posted Online: Feb. 08, 2013, 9:04 pm
Last Updated: Feb. 08, 2013, 9:49 pm

Des Moines trip offers glimpse into SouthPark's potential

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By Dawn Neuses dneuses@qconline.com

A plan for updating SouthPark Mall could be in place by the end of the year, Moline city administrator Lew Steinbrecher said Friday.

He was part of the SouthPark Mall Task Force that toured the renovatedSouthridge Mall in Des Moines on Thursday. Southridge, like SouthPark, is owned by Macerich Co.

The task force, which includes city and Quad Cities Chamber members, has been discussing possible improvements or renovations at SouthPark with the mall owners for more than a year.

Recently, Macerich re-created its Des Moines mall into a mixed-use development that includes retail, education and residential.

Mr. Steinbrecher said task force members met with a Macerich official Thursday who has been designated by the company to undertake the revival and renovation of SouthPark.

At this point, nothing is designed or planned for SouthPark, but the task force hopes a plan will be in place by the end of the year, he said.

Mr. Steinbrecher said the tour gave task force members a sense of the work done at Southridge, how a mall can be renovated, and a sense of the care Macerich took with its anchor tenants "which will obviously be important for SouthPark."

The task force also discussed how direct access on and off John Deere Road would help SouthPark.

"There are no concepts or schematics developed yet, but is obviously important to Macerich so it will be important to the city," Mr. Steinbrecher said.

"It was a good meeting," he said. "We are pleased Macerich has SouthPark, not only on its radar but plan to give it attention in the upcoming year. Hopefully, things will continue to progress and we will know what direction Macerich is headed in later this year."