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Malls cater to shoppers' every need

Dispatch/Argus Photo By Terry Herbig

The Quad-Cities offers a wide variety of shopping malls, strip malls, department and discount stores and specialty shops.

MOLINE -- Need a clothing gift for your petite niece, tiny trees to accent your new model train, or a collectible farm toy?

You don't have to drive three hours to Chicago to find a variety of clothes, collectibles or other items.

The Quad-Cities area has three large shopping malls -- NorthPark, SouthPark and Duck Creek -- and dozens of smaller, strip malls.

All three shopping centers have the locally based Von Maur department store and Younkers as anchor stores. NorthPark and SouthPark also have JC Penney, Montgomery Ward, and Sears for anchors.

What one mall doesn't have, usually can be found at the other. At SouthPark, Petite Sophisticate has suits for the tiny lawyer in the family, and San Francisco Music Box has special gifts and collectors items.

NorthPark's Kitchens store and AJ's Farm Toys cater to customers with special interests in cooking and classic toys and models. Folwell's Rolling Pin, also sells an array of cooking items and collectibles at SouthPark and Duck Creek.

Together, the three major shopping centers have the chain stores Quad-Cities shoppers have come to expect. But it doesn't end there.

New developments are popping up on both sides of the river, from Moline's John Deere Road to Davenport's 53rd Street. They make excursions to rent a video or buying a Whitey's malt more convenient for people who don't want to drive to the mall.

Strip malls often have specialty stores shoppers can't find in the larger malls, such as HobbyTown USA in the Heritage Place strip mall on East 53rd Street in Davenport, or Dancer's Closet in Bettendorf, which sells dance shoes and apparel.

Rock Island hasn't seen as much strip mall development as it has free-standing shops, community and economic development director Greg Champagne, said. ``We've seen some of that kind of development, particularly on 18th Avenue,'' he said.

Mr. Champagne cited the opening of a Checkers fast-food restaurant and Auto Zone store, and a new Walgreens.

Although no new strip malls went up in Bettendorf last year, economic development director Steve Van Dyke said several expanded. Four new businesses, and one hotel, were built last year. Another hotel is going up adjacent to the Lady Luck Casino.

Discount retailers such as Wal-Mart and Kohl's, have stores in Moline and Davenport.

``Moline has just experienced a huge retail growth,'' the city's economic development coordinator, Nancy Mulcahey said, citing the opening of Wal-Mart and Lowe's on the John Deere Road corridor.

East Moline has three strip malls bordering 42nd Avenue, while Silvis has a newer strip mall along Colona Avenue, anchored by HyVee.

-- By Marcy Norton (February 2, 1998)

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