NORFOLK, Va. (WAVY) — Military Circle Mall is closing and is set to be demolished in the first quarter of 2023 for future redevelopment of the site.
The Norfolk Economic Development Authority voted on the decision Wednesday.
Current tenants will now have until the end of 2022 to relocate. Jared Chalk, the director of the Norfolk Department of Economic Development, says meetings will be held in the coming weeks to answer concerns, and the goal is to relocate them all to other areas of the city.
A release from the City of Norfolk stated that the current mall manager, Divaris Real Estate, is currently notifying mall tenants regarding the latest developments.
“A robust tenant relocation plan is in place that includes relocation assistance for current tenants,” the release said.
“The EDA board unanimously decided to move forward with the demolition of the current mall to prepare the site for future redevelopment. The site will be converted to passive open space while ongoing discussions occur regarding the future of the Military Circle corridor,” stated Jared Chalk, Director of Economic Development.”
The mall, which opened back in 1970, has just one anchor store left, a Ross Dress For Less whose lease hasn’t expired yet. The Ross however is expected to remain, along with the Sentara Healthcare/Optima Health location in the former JCPenney. That space was bought from the development authority in 2020.
The majority of the mall’s property was purchased for $13.4 million by the development authority in 2020.
Three different proposals, from musician Pharrell Williams, NFL Hall of Famer Emmitt Smith and local developer Bruce Thompson, were submitted to the city in hopes of winning the redevelopment bid. Two, from Williams and Smith, have proposed arenas.
While the city has yet to officially pick a proposal, 10 On Your Side has confirmed with City Manager Chip Filer that Norfolk is in negotiations with Williams’ team.
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