Center City’s highly anticipated Fashion District is 80 percent leased out, but developers say Philadelphians will have to wait yet another year for its opening.
Fashion District Philadelphia, the mall that’s a joint venture by Macerich and PREIT was expected to open in November at the site of the former Gallery on 9th and Market, but in a statement Wednesday night, the developers pushed back that opening until the fall.
“As the partnership continues to execute on the vision, it is clear that in order to maximize overall success, it is best for Fashion District Philadelphia to deliver collectively with one high-impact grand opening in September 2019,” Macerich and PREIT said in the statement. They went on to point to the “large-scale, complex nature” of the project as a reason for the extended timeline.
Despite the delay, many of the tenants seem ready to go—in fact, 80 percent of the space is leased out to clothing and accessory retailers, restaurants, and entertainment spaces.
Those include big names like Polo Ralph Lauren, H&M, Forever 21, Guess, and ULTA. For dining, expect to find City Winery, a “culinary and cultural wine experience offering intimate concerts, food and wine classes, private events and fine dining in a city setting,” the statement said. There will also be a Chickie and Pete’s, Dallas BBQ, and la Madeleine.
Developers are dedicating a third-floor zone to entertainment, with an AMC Theaters.
There will be a fair amount of art in the new space; The Fashion District is including $1 million in commissioned art pieces. They’re also implementing “Uniquely Philly,” which the statement describes as, “a curated collection of authentically Philadelphia offerings, creating opportunity for local businesses to establish a presence and capitalize on the foot traffic of this high profile destination.”
The new mall has been underway for some time—construction started on redeveloping The Gallery in late 2016 into a mall that would be called the Fashion Outlets. Then, in the summer of 2017, developers announced that they planned to take the mall in a new direction by focusing on integrating retail, entertainment, and food. From there, the “Fashion District” name was born.
Most recently, developers finished construction on the 70-foot glass entrance to the space, dubbed “The Cube.” They posted a time-lapse video of The Cube’s construction from April to November, 2017.