Art Falcone’s $300 million plan to rebuild the now-defunct Plantation Fashion Mall scored approvals from the Plantation City Council on Wednesday, clearing the way for the developer to begin construction in the near future.
The newly approved plans call for Falcone to demolish much of the 37-acre complex, as well as renovate a handful of the Fashion Mall’s existing buildings. His firm, Encore Capital Management, bought the mall out of bankruptcy at an auction early last year for $37.7 million.
Over the mall’s bones, Falcone hopes to erect 700 rental apartments, roughly 250,000 square feet of office space and another 225,000 square feet of retail. A significant chunk of the office space would be housed in an existing building that Falcone is eyeing for a gut-renovation.
Along with many of the existing buildings, the Fashion Mall’s name will be replaced. Encore said in a news release that it will announce a new name for the property by next week.
The project will be split into two phases. The idea, Falcone said in a statement, is to replace the languishing Fashion Mall with a “live, work and play destination” — a motif that’s frequently leaned on by developers who hope to draw interest from millennials and young professionals.
Groundbreaking is slated to begin in the second quarter of 2017. So far, according to the release, Encore is courting interest from about a dozen tenants totalling 40,000 square feet of the project’s retail space. The team is also traveling to the International Council of Shopping Centers symposium in New York next week in hopes of drumming up more buzz.
As Falcone told The Real Deal earlier this year, Encore plans to finance the project’s initial stages with its own capital and seek outside funding later on if needed. The redevelopment will take three-to-four years to complete.